Three Fort Wayne residents Tuesday shared concerns with Fort Wayne City Council members about the health effects of radiation from the smart meters that track water usage.
The residents talked about the meters effect on growing health concerns for certain medical conditions during public comment at Tuesdays meeting.
City Utilities in 2022 began installing smart water meters that electronically measure how much water is being used by a business or residence, according to the departments website. The measurement is then sent back to City Utilities without having to send out employees monthly to read meters.
The residents said they are concerned about the amount of radiofrequency radiation produced by the meters and related health consequences.
Linda Wiegman said she is part of the 5% to 10% of the population with a sensitivity to radiofrequency radiation exposure. This is caused by a medical condition called electromagnetic hypersensitivity.
Many of our citizens of Fort Wayne are currently experiencing new or magnified health symptoms from exposure to the smart meters installed on our homes, but they are not aware of the root cause, she said. I see this happening in my very own neighborhood.
Wiegman said a neighbor has two metal rods in their back and a pacemaker. The person is now housebound because of the adverse effects of the radiofrequency radiation, she said.
Sharon Hans said she has been to the hospital repeatedly over seven months, and at one time, she was admitted because of how the smart meters affect her. Hans said she also lost her job because the business had smart meters installed.
I didnt have this problem until the meters were put in my house, and I didnt know what it was, she said. I just felt sick all the time.
Dennis Benjamin shared more information about Hans experience. He said she has been to multiple doctors including surgeons.
She was a healthy person seven months ago, he said.
Benjamin said Hans needs the meters removed from her house so she can go home. She has suffered financially from previously living in a hotel for more than two months to stop feeling sick.
Now she walks around the house with a meter trying to find a corner of her house that is not being bombarded by (radiofrequency) radiation, he said. She cant sleep she hasnt slept in three nights because shes sick to her stomach.
Benjamin said when contacted about the issue, city officials have recommended she go to a shelter.
We asked a lot of you for help during this problem, he said. Sent letters and (documents) to several of you asking for help.
No council members commented on the smart meters during the meeting. Councilwoman Sharon Tucker, D-6th, said she would have to look deeper into the issue to understand the effect that radiation from smart meters can have on people.
Tucker said Tuesday was the first or second time shes heard concerns about radiation from smart meters.
During public comment, no one from City Utilities was present to comment.
The city's tactics were really heavy-handed when they decided to put those in a couple years ago. They threatened jail time and permanent loss of service if you refused to have it installed. Same with the electric meters.