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ELLO ELLO ELLO! Cops' noisy radios making them deaf.

Byline: JON CLEMENTS

HUNDREDS of police officers have been injured over the past five years... by their radios.

Screeching feedback through the earpiece has damaged their hearing, some permanently, according to a study by the Police Review magazine.

Some 613 officers around the UK have reported having their hearing damaged by police radio screeches.

A total of 571 claims were from officers in the Lanca-shire Constabulary between 2005 and 2009.

One cop, who did not want to be named, said: "Sometimes you just hear a massive screeching in your earpiece and you have to take it out. It takes you a few minutes to get your head together."

A spokeswoman for Airwave - which supply radios to UK forces - said: "There is no evidence that Airwave users suffer illness or any ill effects as a result of using their radios."

Paul Lewis, the health and safety chief at the Police Federation, said: "The main concern with the Airwave Tetra system for me is that when it was set up, the government allowed forces to buy their own pieces of equipment instead of having one type across the board. You get what you pay for. So sometimes the equipment isn't effective to prevent hearing damage and we have a number of cases ongoing."

A spokesman for Lancashire Police said: "These claims are being thoroughly investigated."

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Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Apr 23, 2010
Words:229
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