Letter: Good to talk?

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The Independent Culture
Sir: Professor Donaldson, the Chief Medical Officer, says that many people are unsure what action they should take while a health risk is being researched, and some prefer to take action (letter, 16 June).

Many people rely on the Government and government agencies for advice upon such subjects. The advice regarding mobile phones presented by the National Radiological Protection Board is that 10 specific absorption rates is safe. No mobile phone emits penetrating radiation anywhere near that figure, but I have not seen published any grounds for the NRPB's view.

It sits oddly with the professor's comments. He says the subject is still being researched, and indeed the Government has set up a committee of Enquiry. So what really is the Government's present advice to the public?

It would also be interesting to know what the professor's personal preference is: to do nothing, or take some such precaution as a hands-free earpiece, as Mr Branson has proposed. And what would be his reasons for his decisions?

PETER REYNOLDS

Southport, Merseyside

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