• 15 SEP 09
    • 0

    #1124: Court verdict finds ICRP’s risk assessment inadequate

    From Richard Bramhall:

    Verdict based on failure of ICRP risk model

    On September 10th a Coroner’s jury in the West Midlands found that depleted Uranium caused the fatal cancer of a soldier – Lance Corporal Stuart Dyson – who served in Iraq during the 1991 Gulf War.
    Professor Chris Busby, scientific adviser to the LLRC and Scientific Secretary of the European Committee on Radiation Risk, gave detailed evidence for two and a half hours. In answer to questions from the Coroner and Counsel for Mr. Dyson’s family, Busby explained the weakness of the risk model advised by the International Commission on Radiological Protection.
    In March Busby had submitted a “Report on probability of causation”. Ten days before the hearing the Ministry of Defence responded with an attack on Busby’s credibility without addressing the scientific arguments except by reference to the International Committee on Radiological Protection. MoD was unrepresented at the hearing and failed to send an expert witness.
    The jury determined that Mr. Dyson’s exposure to Uranium had probably caused or contributed to his death.
    Juries are present in only 2% of inquests in the UK. The Coroner in this case said that, because the verdict had important implications for the well-being of other people, he was obliged to write to the Secretary of State for Defence.
    A PDF compilation of the expert witnesses’ written statements is at:

    http://www.llrc.org/du/subtopic/dysonrept.pdf.

    This is the first time that a UK court case has centred on evidence of the scientific invalidity of the ICRP’s advice. The Court also heard evidence relating to the Secondary Photoelectron effect; see:
    http://www.newscientist.com/channel/health/mg19926723.800-how-war-debris-
    could-cause-cancer.html

    The complete article free to view is at:
    http://www.newweapons.org/filestore/NewScientist_6sept08_How_war_debris_
    could_cause_cancer-health.pdf

    The Dyson verdict could have far-reaching legal consequences for practices which involve releasing Uranium and other heavy metals.

    Telegraph case report: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/politics/defence/6169318/Ex-soldier-
    died-of-cancer-caused-by-Gulf-War-uranium.html

    It should be noted that, as far as LLRC knows, the ICRP has not delivered on its undertaking “to collect relevant data and perform calculations to check whether there was any possibility of a real effect in living tissues”. The UK Health Protection Agency did attempt some calculations but got them seriously wrong, as reported in a previous LLRC email circular (January ’09).

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