NY residents sue for $100m over phone masts
Short boxes killing property prices
Residents are suing the Long Island town of Hempstead for allowing the installation of cell phone antennae, on the basis that it's lowering the value of their properties.
The claim is not regarding the potential health risks, as has been the case before, but that the local authority has been negligent in preventing brown boxes being fitted to telegraph poles without allowing for the inevitable reduction in property values that would result.
"The Town of Hempstead has acted in an irresponsible manner, causing the value of a persons’ property to diminish," said legal representative Glenn Stephenson, "We are seeking for a day in court to prove that the Town of Hempstead, Metro PCS, and Next G Networks, violated the fifth and fourteenth amendments of the United States Constitution."
Stephenson added that they'd like $100m in damages, please, and an immediate cessation of any kind of wireless-infrastructure installation.
The boxes being installed by Next G, on behalf of Metro PCS, are pretty small - about 60cm high - and don't require planning permission, so there's no notification or opportunity for public discussion.
newsday.com has a good video showing the boxes too
The town of Hempstead isn't being drawn on the matter: it won't comment on ongoing litigation, but with 4G and upwards requiring more base stations, and base stations getting smaller all the time, it might not be long before you find a brown box suspended outside your own house. ®
Here in New Zealand
I may sue someone for being endangered and stressed when the cable going up a pole just a short distance from my property, got flames shooting out of it.
Then the transformer across the street went bang , and a fire engine turned up.
Plus the deprivation of having no power for a few hours.
The twitch I got was almost like when a force 6..8 earthquake with epicentre about 20 km away , that we had a couple of years ago.
It's all true I tell you.
Nimby wimby woo.
You're talking about people who would read the Fail or the Excess if they lived in the UK. You can tell this because they are (1) obsessed with house prices and (2) opposed to any and all change.
Last year on our street the streetlights were replaced with new, brighter lights. This meant we ended up with much better lighting and fewer lamposts (and lower CO2 emissions for the Grauniad readers at number 4). In order to achieve the best spread of lighting some of the lamposts were moved. As a result we had some neighbours who threatened to take action against the local authority for taking their lampost away. And others threating to take action against the local authority for putting a new lampost outside their house. It would have made an interesting case.
In these cases I believe the best course of action for the LA to take is to offer to put things back exactly as they were. It would satisfy the court and totally piss off the complainants. And of course if the complainants complained further this would demonstrate that the suit was speculative or frivolous which probably amount to contempt.