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Presented to AICC Meeting September 10, 2013 By John Prendergast Blooston, Mordkofsky, Dickens, Duffy & Prendergast, LLP.

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Presentation on theme: "Presented to AICC Meeting September 10, 2013 By John Prendergast Blooston, Mordkofsky, Dickens, Duffy & Prendergast, LLP."— Presentation transcript:

1 Presented to AICC Meeting September 10, 2013 By John Prendergast Blooston, Mordkofsky, Dickens, Duffy & Prendergast, LLP

2 FCC is charged with keeping pace with current knowledge and changing needs of National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). Rules for health and safety of radiofrequency (RF) emissions last changed in 1996. Ten years since 2003 rule change proposals. Cecilia Kang, Washington Post blogs: The Government Accountability Office (GAO) has been looking into the adequacy of the cell phone standard for over a year now, at the request of three members of Congress...following IARC's [World Health Organizations International Agency for Research on Cancer] decision to classify mobile phone radiation as a possible human carcinogen. The GAO has been asking questions about what FCC has been and should be doing.

3 1.First Report & Order: FCC changes, clarifies certain rules. Effective Date: August 5, 2013. 2.Further NPRM: FCC proposes further changes to existing rules. Biggest threat is to categorical exemption and treatment of fixed radios as mobiles. 3.Notice of Inquiry: While tinkering with the rules for current RF exposure limit, FCC is already asking if it should change its standard.

4 Labeling Training Clarification of Multiple Transmitter Site Responsibilities FCC will now use OETs online Knowledge Database (KDB) to provide guidance and general policy statements on acceptable procedures for evaluating compliance for portable and mobile wireless devices: Avoids need for repeated rule making proceedings Earlobe is now classified as an extremity subject to less strict RF limit

5 1.Labeling Requirements for Occupational Use: To reduce potential for harmful exposure from mobile/portable devices, the FCC has adopted labeling requirements to make workers aware of potential for exposure. a.Alarm companies using wireless technology should check with equipment vendors to make sure that proper labeling is used. 2.Training. The FCC wants to ensure that workers at higher permitted levels of exposure have the appropriate level of awareness and control to ensure that they are not subject to RF exposures above the occupational/controlled limits. a.This information may be provided to workers in writing and/or verbally, provided that exposed persons are fully aware of the potential for exposure and can exercise control over their exposure. b.Alarm companies using wireless should work with their equipment vendors and regulatory counsel to determine the appropriate training/signage needed for their radio operations.

6 3.Compliance at Sites with Multiple Transmitters: FCC clarifies that all licensees that exceed the 5% RF exposure limit threshold at any non-compliant location are jointly and severally responsible and may be subject to FINES. a.FCC: Use site user agreements to share information about operating characteristics in order to ensure RF compliance. b.Alarm companies should ask owner/site manager in advance what other operations are at the site, and determine whether adding their antenna will trigger any compliance issues. c.The site lease also should specify site owner/manager responsibility for ensuring that future site users will not cause the site to fall out of compliance, exposing all existing users to potential liability.

7 Elimination of Categorical Exclusions from RF Evaluation based on Radio Service Creation of General Power- and Distance-based Exemption Creation of RF Exposure Mitigation Requirements Proposed Warnings/Disclosures re RF to Consumers

8 FCC is proposing to eliminate radio service-based exclusions. Part 90 and Part 101 stations (and others) are generally categorically excluded from routine evaluations, based on typical power and antenna height. If the FCCs proposal is adopted, licensees could be required to perform calculations or measurements, which may significantly increase costs associated with system design. Focus is now on separation from humans. Part 90 and Part 101 licensees may now be required to certify compliance on a yearly basis, either by calculation or measurement, depending on the power of the system.

9 FCC requests comment on new exemption intended to apply to all radio services. New exemption criteria for single RF sources based on power, frequency, and separation distance for all services using fixed, mobile, and portable transmitters. FCC has requested comment on exemption criteria for both Maximum Permissible Exposure (MPE) limits and Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) limits for fixed, mobile, and portable RF sources near a human body. FCC seeks comment on method for calculating the new exemption criteria for multiple transmitters collocated on the same structure, such as a tower, building, or utility pole.

10 FCC seeks comment on steps that licensees must take to ensure that exposure limits are not exceeded, including: Specific training, access restriction, and signage requirements for fixed transmitter sites. Specific mitigation would depend on whether the RF radiation exceeds the general population exposure limit or the occupational exposure limit, and by how much. FCC continues to push joint responsibility for mitigation actions among all licensees at site whose RF sources produce at least 5% of applicable exposure limit. FCC asks how to encourage cooperation among property owners, managers, and licensees in mitigation steps.

11 Proposal to eliminate service-based exclusion will raise costs. Costs could be minimal for many facilities, but complicated and expensive for others, especially if there are multiple antennas at site. FCC proposes to eliminate categorical exclusions for mobile units which, depending upon use, could have the unintended consequence of requiring fixed-base licensing for some fixed radios now licensed as mobile units (including customer premise radios operating on central station offset frequencies?) Important for alarm device manufacturers to examine revised 1.1307(b) and related Table 1 and appendices to see how proposed single transmitter and multiple transmitter exemption formulas fall out for alarm radios.

12 1.BloostonLaw: a.Dont eliminate radio service exclusions for the sake of uniformity, when it creates cost and delay and no evidence that current exemption results in RF violations. b.Dont hold licensees liable for RF compliance issues created by subsequent site users. 2.CTIA: a.No evidence of RF danger despite repeated studies, so FCC should not require consumer warnings that will suggest that danger exists. b.FCC RF standard is already 50x safer than needed, FCC should not adopt more stringent requirements in absence of evidence of harmful RF levels. c.Instead, FCC should consider adopting IEEE/ICNIRP (Europe) standard, limiting RF emissions to 2.0 watts per kilogram averaged over 10 grams of tissue, versus FCCs current 1.6 w/kg averaged over 1g of tissue. This standard is based on scientific consensus, less onerous, and would better facilitate global equipment harmonization.

13 3.PCIA: a.Generic exemption criteria are needlessly restrictive and will create more delay and cost. Need to recognize that towers (v. buildings) raise fewer concerns because public not near. b.Create a safe harbor for efforts needed to warn public and workers of RF hazard, since site/building owner may not cooperate. c.Make sure new RF rules do not conflict with Fire Codes and other safety laws that may prohibit restricting rooftop access, etc. 4.Motorola a.Use international RF standards for exemptions, mitigation steps and any future revisions to RF exposure limit. 5.TIA a.Supports European standard b.No basis for consumer warnings, will undermine public confidence in wireless c.No need to revisit RF exposure limit in context of NOI.

14 1.Keep categorical Part 90 exclusion 2.What About Customer Premise Radios? With regard to mobile units, the FCC states: …We now propose to delete the existing mobile power exemptions and apply the new proposed general fixed transmitter power exemptions to mobile and portable devices as well…The new exemption proposal would allow higher powers at greater distances for both mobile and fixed devices, would apply to all services, and would be valid in possibly reflective environments and at lower frequencies; however, this proposal would necessarily reduce the exemption power for mobile devices used at 20 cm… This is potential big problem for the alarm industry, which currently can classify fixed customer radios as mobiles

15 FCC seeks comments to determine whether its RF exposure limits and policies need to be reassessed. FCC also seeks comment on the following RF radiation issues: Recommendations on alternative RF radiation limits, based on currently available research and in light of the increase in numbers and usage of fixed transmitters and portable and mobile devices. Analysis of technical differences that have been raised in recent standards- setting activities and ongoing research. How to better provide information to consumers and the public about RF exposure. Approaches to controlling RF exposure, including the use of conventional exposure limits vs. other precautionary measures and differences in worldwide implementation of these philosophies. How to improve the process of developing evaluation procedures. The FCCs current portable device separation distance policy when determining compliance.

16 Verify compliance with rules that went into effect Aug. 5 Submit AICC input on rule proposals by Nov. 1 Important for alarm equipment manufacturers to evaluate the impact of the FCCs proposals on the certification and operation of their equipment; to help shape FCC policy to the extent that it could potentially create unreasonable burdens on equipment users; and advise their customers how to minimize any impact.

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