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Stop the Construction of a Cell Phone Tower on the Playground of Magothy And Severn River Middle Schools!

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Verizon Wireless and Milestone Communications plan to erect a 110' cell phone tower on the playground of the Magothy River and Severn River Middle Schools.  Parents and local residents are strongly opposed to the installation of a cell tower at the site.


Potential health risks to children, teachers, other adults and pets – Cell phone towers emit radio frequencies (RF), a form of electromagnetic radiation (EMR), for a distance of up to 2.5 miles. Studies have shown that even at low levels of this radiation, there is evidence of damage to cell tissue and DNA, and it has been linked to brain tumors, cancer, suppressed immune function, depression, miscarriage, Alzheimer’s disease, and numerous other serious illnesses (1). Children are at a much greater risk, due to their thinner skulls, and rapid rate of growth. In 2011, The World Health Organization (WHO)/International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) classified EMR as a possible carcinogen to humans (the same classification as DDT and lead) based on an increased risk for glioma (a malignant type of brain cancer). In the past five years alone, about 1,800 new scientific papers have been published that show adverse health effects. (2) Dr. George Carlo, a public health expert who coordinated the telecommunications industry’s own study, which was mandated by  congress, confirms that exposure to communications radiation from wireless technology is "potentially the biggest health insult" this nation has ever seen. Dr. Carlo believes RF/microwave radiation is a greater threat than cigarette smoking and asbestos.

Lawmakers in countries across our globe are responding to the emerging science on the dangers and risks associated with this type of radiation and developing new safety rules. However, the United States is largely ignoring the warning from the W.H.O.  The cell phone industry may argue that there is no definitive evidence that these towersare harmful, but WE argue that there is no clear evidence that these towers are safe. Do we really want our children to be part of this risky experiment? The school and many residences are within what is considered by many experts to be a “high risk” danger zone of 1500’ where there have been reports of a 300-400% increase in risk of cancers. (3)

Security concerns of unknown cell company workers on school grounds - With up to 5 cell phone carriers using this tower, there will be employees from 5 different companies having 24 hours access to the school grounds.  These employees will have no background checks by the county, will not be checking in with the front desk, will not be escorted around the property and will be driving large trucks across the schools grounds and fields where our children have gym.  

Towers avoiding paying property taxes - The cell towers being put on school board land are trying to avoid paying taxes by going up on exempt properties.  According to the State Department of Assessments and Taxation, either the Board or the Milestone needs to pay property taxes.  Both the Board and Milestone were unaware of that fact discussed during the July 9th Board meeting.

Property Value loss - On average, a cell phone tower will reduce property values between 4 and 20% in the surrounding community.  This reduction in property value also creates a loss in tax revenue for the county both annually and during the sale of a house.

Hazmat Site Listing - With all the equipment necessary, including propane tanks for the generators, Montgomery County considers cell phone tower locations as HazMat Sites.  Do you want a HazMat site on school grounds?

1 Microwave and Radio Frequency Radiation Exposure, San Francisco Medicine , Vol. 74, No 3, March 2001

2 For more on these peer-reviewed studies, please go to the BioInitiative Report 2012 (, a report written by 29 independent scientists and health experts from around the world on possible health risks from wireless technologies and electromagnetic fields. 

3 Authors: Ronni Wolf MD, Danny Wolf MD. Transmission Mast on the Incidence of Cancer, 2004 German Study.

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