Are RFID Readers Hazardous To Your Health?

Written by Evan Schuman
June 15th, 2006

FCC regs on RF exposure safety requires that at least 8.7 inches always exist between RFID antennae radiating elements and people. How many DCs bother to check?

One industry official—who asked that his name not be used—wondered whether the potential danger from RFID and related readers was being seriously explored. “Some backrooms have 14-30 antennas and all of these are clustered around doors,” the official said. “No one has started to address any of the OSHA safety issues, nor even ask any questions.”

It’s a fair question. In other industries, labor unions would sometimes push such questions, but the lack of unionization in many of these sites truly puts the onus back on management.


One Comment | Read Are RFID Readers Hazardous To Your Health?

  1. Pete Abell Says:

    This is clearly an issue. The OSHA Regs are for 1 Watt and the Gen 2 FCC Regs are 4 Watts at the reader/antenna level. Apparently no scientific studies were done on human safety issues before the RFID craze created the initial swell of pilots and implementations. The EU has a maximum of 2 Watts which is a move up from their previous limitation of 1/2 watt. Perhaps some true studies are needed before RFID becomes ubiquitous like the bar code.


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