Josh-D. S. Davis

Xaminmo / Omnimax / Max Omni / Mad Scientist / Midnight Shadow / Radiation Master

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Power lines
Josh 2014
because I had a really good post here and don't want to lose it.

Profile picture for user3686332user3686332
How close is to close to high voltage power lines and what is a safe distance?
There is a great property for sale in my area but it's about 500 feet from 3 high voltage towers. We have a growing family and don't want to endanger our health. I have don't research and every article tells you all these scary stories but at the end states that none of this has been proven. Any advice?
July 19 2012 - Avenel
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Answers (25) Sort by:
Profile picture for trent nesslertrent nessler
Kroll et al, 2010 British Journal of Cancer. 1.14x increase risk for cancer for every .2 ut over average.
February 08 2014

Profile picture for user1708459user1708459
just to share something, I worked on a house close to transmission lines. I was installing can lighting, pulled in a home run to the panel then hooked up the hot wire to the breaker and the white wire to the neutral bar. I did not hook up the ground wire at this time but took a voltage measurement from the neutral bar to the ground wire and my voltmeter read 6.8 volts. I then went and removed the can light from extending into the ceiling and went back to the panel and took another reading and the voltage dropped to 0.1volts. yes emf does exist, talk about chasing grounds this was a real hair puller, I have been an electrician for many years and never ran across this before.
September 30 2013

Profile picture for ScottCary209Scott Cary, "ScottCary209"
(10 reviews) Contributions:134
There are many good answers thus far. You may also visit your electric company and they will come out and provide a reading for you concerning the EMFs produced by the wires...but as I understand it, your Microwave produces much more that the wires in the distance.

I always recommend to my clients that they look further down the road...toward resale! as you may investigate and find that this isn't a big deal, the next time you sell...most buyers will just keep going and not be interested because of what the see in the area!

This is no different than being located on a busy street or near an apartment building...the old saying is still strong today "Location, Location, Location".

Scott Cary-Broker
January 27 2013

Profile picture for MR555Wolf Man, "MR555"
Faced with the same situation now.. The cold hard facts are this:
The Lines are dangerous. They do emit EMF.
here is the bigger problem.

Line 1 Carries 125KV
Line 2 Carries 250 KV
Line 3 Carries up to 750Kv or even more.

the Safety Distances that are documented only address line 1 and 2.
but not these newer super high power lines. Some of which run for miles through Green Belt corridors.

The reality is that, unless you have a Stainless Steel roof over your head, even when your sleeping your getting more emf than the guy across the street.

I realize that Propery Taxes and LandValue is lower and more attractive, but consider the obvious.. this isnt just about Stigma, your Real Estate agent should have taken a GaussMeter reading before even showing you the property.

Good luck my friend.
January 27 2013

Profile picture for user3034691user3034691
Hi everybody,
I like xaminmo's answer and I verified it practically, lol!
I moved recently to an apartment and signed a lease contract for 6 months. Two days later I noticed there are several high voltage power lines about 450 meters from my apartment. I got paranoid as I've heard that they cause cancer! I did a research online but did not find what distance can be considered safe. However, all those who claim that EMF is dangerous agree that 2.5 milligauss (some say 3 milligauss) and higher of AC magnetic field can be dangerous. So here is what I did, I purchased a 3-axis milligauss meter and I measured the EMF myself. The EMF was below 1 milligauss in my apartment (what a relief, lol), but just to know the dangerous distance, I walked myself towards the power lines and found that the EMF starts to get higher when the distance is 140 meters or less. I used Google Earth to get accurate distances. So this is what I concluded: 150 meters from the high voltage lines is safe!
By the way, try to keep some distance from your laptop, as near my laptop, the milligauss meter showed very high readings (50 milliguass or higher) :/ It's funny that I was worrying about the EMF emitted from power lines 460 meters away from me while I was doing a research about whether it's harmful or not using my laptop which has EMF around it more than 10 times the dangerous amount of EMF! hehe!
Your rating has been saved!
October 09 2012

Profile picture for xaminmoJosh Davis, "xaminmo"
Rather than sorting all of the conflicting research on safe vs not safe,
avoid being close enough that the EMF is measurably different from background. Those distances are:

* 100 feet for 133 kV lines
* 150 feet for 230 kV lines
* 250 feet for 345 kV lines
* 350 feet for 550 kV lines

At 500 feet, you will not be able to measure a difference in field strength from ambient ambient (lines off during maintenance).

Regarding property values, the average decrease for lots abutting power easements is 21%, with minimum of 12% and max of 30%.

Corona byproducts, etc are unavoidable no matter where. Air flows. Germs and dust from Asia reaches the entire west coast. Being 10 miles from the lines won't really help.

Even with all of the proof, the real question is, would you FEEL safe? Even if there is no increase in risk, if you feel unsafe, you will worry, suffer stress, and overall have a decrease in quality of life.


My house is 200 feet from a 345kV aerial line. In the right weather, I can hear the lines sing. Other than that, the electric fields are dissipated, and the magnetic flux isn't measurable over the electronics I have in my house.
July 31 2012

Profile picture for user3686332user3686332
Thank you all for your great responces. I truely appriciate it. I have truely thought about saftey, health, location and resale value. I had a feeling and a gut instinct but sometimes getting a second, third and even stranges oppinions really does open your eyes just that much wider.

Still house hunting,
July 23 2012

Profile picture for Coolidge or ChaosNorm D Plume, "Coolidge or Chaos"
strictly from a lending standpoint, getting a loan on a property within the fall distance of the tower can be difficult if possible at all. If the tower is 500 feet high then the property needs to be greater than 500 feet from the tower.
July 20 2012

Profile picture for Ofe PolackOfe Polack, "Ofe Polack"
(20 reviews) Contributions:3670
You are questioning the location and so will the next person who entertains the possibility of buying that home. With so many properties on the market, why bother with this one?
July 20 2012

Profile picture for PasadenanPasadenan
The EMF power is proportional to voltage, proportional to current, proportional to the distance between the wires of different phases, and inversely proportional to the square of the distance.

Without knowing the voltage and current levels, it is not possible to calculate the radiation exposure. Radiation does cause cancer, but different people have different risk levels, and different parts of the body have different susceptibilities to cancer. The body will heal on its own if given time, but may not be able to heal if under constant exposure.

One can often determine the voltage by the height of the cables. They put them up higher if they are at higher voltages. One can also count the insulators to get an idea of the voltage. More insulators are required for higher voltage. (Those little ceramic disk looking things hanging down between the tower support and the cables).

There are also different effects at different EMF frequencies. Obviously everyone already knows about the sun-burn effects on the skin and skin cancer for the ultra-violet frequencies. No known affects for most of the "visible" light portion of the EMF spectrum. 60 hz at low power is typically not an issue, but when one is close to the high voltage towers with large wire sizes for carrying lots of current... one is not talking about "low power".

Personally, for most high voltage towers, I prefer a minimum of 1/4 mile distance. (that would be 1320 feet). More than likely, 1/8 of a mile (one city block) (660 feet) is probably sufficient.

If one is "working" in that environment 5 days a week, 8 hours a day, that is substantially different than "living" in that environment 7 days a week over 20 hours a day. If one is going to expose themselves to radiation, they need to have substantial time away from that exposure.

Just like they tell you with X-Rays, the affects are cumulative. It is not the one time short exposure that is going to be the problem. It is the combined exposure over a period of time.
July 19 2012


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