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Women Fights to have ham radio operations banned after potential interference with insulin pump.

Discussion in 'Amateur Radio News' started by KA4WHT, Aug 24, 2021.

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  1. KE0WFI

    KE0WFI Ham Member QRZ Page

    Anyone know if a petition is up somewhere for this person to sign to show support and help get this person back on the air while proving as well that this lady is a quack who thinks it has to interfere due to a basic antenna on a roof
  2. KA4WHT

    KA4WHT Ham Member QRZ Page

    David Birge, The ham that is the focus of this story, actually contacted me by email. He says :

    " I am overwhelmed by all the emails and phone calls after the tv news report. Thank you for your support and best wishes. I rec’d a call from Ed Hare, ARRL and they are taking an interest in this matter. Hopefully they can touch the right people and resolve it.
    KD8DWO, G0CIQ and N0TZU like this.
  3. AA4PC

    AA4PC Ham Member QRZ Page

    Our colleague needs two things, A: Remind the homeowners association that the recommendation (order) from a so called expert is not binding as a private entity has no standing to ask for or order such a thing, it's an FCC matter. Lack of jurisdiction.

    B: Secondly, I would suggest building a spreadsheet showing his operating logs to show precisely when he was transmitting, and compare it with when these alleged malfunctions of the insulin pump happened. Amateurs get blamed for interference almost all the time, and most of the complaints are bogus.

    A guy tells me his home entertainment system was turned to garbage from my ham station, when in fact I had not even turned on the power supply to my station for three months. It turned out he had a malfunctioning surge protection strip powering all items malfunctioning, and the point of failure was his power surge protector.

    Correlate the malfunctions with his transmitting time, and it's very likely he will be exonerated. The logbook isn't just for QSL cards, it can "Alibi" you out of problems.
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2021
    G0CIQ likes this.
  4. AA4PC

    AA4PC Ham Member QRZ Page

    As well, her own home is very likely chock full of electronics that may be interfering. As one fellow commented on the Medtronic's line of medical equipment, I won't have in my home, it's my opinion and that of my medical caregiver that their equipment is sub-par.

    If there's any of the items known to interfere in her home, SHE'S the culprit. Her home electronics are way closer, and more likely to be the cause of problems, but the so called expert didn't check all her electronics before landing on the ham down the street...
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2021
    G0CIQ likes this.
  5. KS5I

    KS5I Ham Member QRZ Page

    As a ham operator approaching 54 years on the air and 53 years in radio broadcasting I have seen a fair amount of things. First, trying to hide the fact that you are a ham operator is totally wrong, in my opinion. I have always done just the opposite. I tell my neighbors I want you to know that I am a ham radio operator and if you ever have any interference problems let me know. If its me, I'll work with you to fix it. The last thing I want you to do is suffer with something and just get more and more frustrated and blame me, because it may not even be my fault. I live in a very nice neighborhood with a 40 foot tower and 3 element yagi on top of it along with a pair of phased dipoles hanging in my back yard. . I've told my neighbors if we ever get into a major altercation with another country or natural disaster and communication sources fail, they may be glad they live next to me. We all get along just fine and its always been that way....everywhere I've lived....and yes, I have had TVI problems which I helped resolve. Just don't offer to work on someones equipment as that opens a door for liability if it fails down the road. I remember buying one neighbor a $5 TVI filter which he installed and problem solved.

    As to this case, I would not want to operate either until the problem here is solved. If someone suffered some ill medical effects from my ham radio operation I don't think I could live with myself, even if it was a problem with their medical device. I still would feel like it was my fault. That said, no one seems to have determined that it is interference from the ham station. There is only one way to determine that and it is to watch the device while
    the transmitter is on. There are many sources of RF/electromagnetic radiation in the world today as so well articulated by K0UM. Only thing I saw he left off were power lines.

    Bottom line is the source of the problem needs to be determined and since the ham operator is being blamed start with his transmitter. As K0UM pointed out, if this person gets too close to an AM broadcast transmitter radiating 50KW, well, who knows what could happen. The mfg. needs to be made aware and the more detailed the information the better. The ARRL is probably a good party to help diagnose this.
    KD8DWO likes this.
  6. K0LWC

    K0LWC XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    I chatted with David Birge (WB9UYK), the ham who is at the center of this issue. Here is the full story from David's perspective. We talked about what kind of power he's running, the antenna he was using and a whole lot more.

    KO4AMB, KB0QIP, WA7AXT and 1 other person like this.
  7. VK7HH

    VK7HH Ham Member QRZ Page

    I came across an interesting article in the media which claims a woman's insulin pump is being "potentially" interfered with by an amateur radio operator down the street. Was this the culprit, or could it be something more? In this video I give my thoughts and investigate what other causes it could be and some of the other issues surrounding this media report.

    KB0QIP likes this.
  8. N7XGR

    N7XGR Ham Member QRZ Page

    I had a situation where I was accused of interference to a TV and a phone. What was done is this.
    I had the Chief of Police which is a Ham and a electronic technician that worked for a major
    electronic manufacture and a College radio station and was also a ham.
    They both were at the home of this reported interference with a portable SW receiver
    so ALL could hear my transmissions and was in contact with me via 2 meters.
    I went through all bands of operation with different antennas and rotated my HF Yagi
    using 100 watts in all directions.
    Nothing was found from my transmissions in ALL tests, the TV and phone worked correctly.

    This is what is needed in this case to prove or disprove as to this Ham causing this insulin
    pump to malfunction, verification is in order from qualified people.

    Bruce N7XGR
  9. VK4JJY

    VK4JJY Ham Member QRZ Page

    You can Google any Medtronics insulin delivery product, and the manuals all state the same FCC part 15 clause the the device may not cause interference, and must accept all interference it receives.
    It’s not a licensed product. The fellow could probably sue his HOA.
    KB0QIP likes this.
  10. AF4OD

    AF4OD XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Hello, Is this the first recorded event of a insulin pump failure due to Ham radio activity? It seems to me that one of us diabetic amateur radio operators using this same pump, sitting in a shack beneath a tribander at 50 foot and a KW would have experienced the failure also.
  11. KB0QIP

    KB0QIP Ham Member QRZ Page

    I have a Medtronic Insulin Pump. I have used the pumps over the past 20 years. There have been times when I have issues with the pump giving too much inslulin or not enough. The pump works with a Contuinious Glouse Monitor which is attached to the body, and has a very tiny lead stuck into the subcutatious layer (fatty layer of skin on the belly) about 3 or 4 mm in. This monitors the blood glouse levels and transmits to the pump which is near by, about 24 inches. The pump receives the data every few seconds and when the blood glouse level reaches a level too high or too low, it sets off an alarm. this is when the diabetic wearing the pump will reach and either give insulin or not. At meal times the diabetic with tell the pump how many carbohirites he/she will be eating/drinking and enter that data into the pump. The pump will calulate the proper doseage. and the USER will push the button to enter the insulin. Each and every issue that I have had can be directly traced to me the USER for any errors. I have worked around multiple frequency divices, radios, radars, transformers. you name it I've been around it. High and Low levels. It is the user that is at fault, not the amateur radio operater. My Doctor and I spoke of this at my recent visit and we both call this B... S...! I hope and pray that WB9UYK David can get back on the hobby he so enjoys soon.
  12. KO4AMB

    KO4AMB Ham Member QRZ Page

    An excellent interview, with important details of the issue. Where did it go ?
  13. WW7GBA

    WW7GBA Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    The insulin pump that was posted, which she is using, has an FDA recall for dosing issues. Dosing was her complaint against the HAM operator. Back in the 70s when the first pacemakers were introduced, RF interference from automatic doors, microwaves, etc caused interference problems. At that point, the medical device manufacturers were mandated to provide appropriate RF shielding on the equipment.

    I am watching this debacle carefully. The problem with this particular case is that in addition to the HOA, the state is also involved as well as the local media (for now). This is concerning because if the state is involved, anyone who makes a call will definitely guarantee a knock on the door of the HAM whose the subject of the complaint. This could be problematic, antennas are tell-tale signs that are visible. Something to digest. As a new HAM, I am going to use attic-mounted antennas. Right now I am dying to purchase a radio and go full steam, but I still have a lot of research to do with regards to an appropriate antenna for HF, Ill be happy with 17, 20, & 40 meter bands (suggestions? I'm ALL ears). I just passed my General on 8/30. I don't want to spend a ton of cash, only to run into one of these folks who enjoy drama and making life difficult for others. Unfortunately, you never know who is looking for drama. Martin G8FXC made a great point in his post.
  14. N1EN

    N1EN Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

  15. CA7OKD

    CA7OKD Ham Member QRZ Page

    An interesting video of N2RJ.

    César CD7CKU
    N0TZU likes this.

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