Oakland County Circuit Court Judge Nanci Grant recently ruled that the DTE Energy company doesn't have to provide power for a couple's home in Royal Oak, Michigan.
Andrea McNinch and her husband didn’t want a smart meter outside their home in June 2014 because Andrea believed it was causing her to have migraine headaches.
A smart meter broadcasts a wireless signal that permits customers to track their use of electricity in real time and allows utility companies to track power use without paying meter readers to manually check analog meters.
“I started to not feel well again,” Andrea told WXYZ (video below). “I suffer from migraines and they started to come back and I couldn’t figure out what it was. And then other people in the community, and I have clients all over the globe, and other people started feeling, having these weird symptoms.”
The couple asked for an analog meter, but DTE Energy offered them an opt-out program, which meant having the smart meter's radio transmitter shut off.
"It's a false opt-out program, in that I'm not allowed the choice to have an analog meter," claimed Andrea.
Andrea removed the smart meter in October 2014 and had an analog meter installed, which is against state law. In December 2014, the Michigan Public Service Commission ruled that DTE Energy's safety concerns about the installation of the analog meter were correct and said the power company could cut power off to the couple's home. Judge Grant agreed in her ruling.
There have been numerous conspiracy theories on the Internet that claim smart meters can cause illnesses. There is even a website called StopSmartMeters.org.
David H. Bailey, of the Lawrence Berkeley National Lab (retired) and University of California, Davis, and Jonathan M. Borwein, Laureate Professor of Mathematics at the University of Newcastle, Australia, wrote in a 2013 op-ed for The Huffington Post:
"To begin with, smart meters use basically the same wireless technology as cell phones. The FCC, after reviewing many scientific studies, has set wireless radiation standards, with which all manufacturers of smart meters easily comply. The frequency of cellular technology microwave radiation corresponds to a wavelength of approximately 30 centimeters, or roughly one foot. This wavelength is thousands of times larger than structures in the brain responsible for mental processes, and so claims that wireless radiation can cause maladies such as 'dizziness' or 'memory loss' are absurd."