AUSTIN, Texas (CN) – Insurers must defend Samsung, Nokia and Cellular One in four class actions alleging that radio frequency radiation emitted by wireless phones caused “biological injury,” the Texas Supreme Court ruled.
The justices ruled 7-2 that Zurich American, Federal Insurance, National Union Fire and Trinity Universal must pay for the federal multi-jurisdiction lawsuits, because “biological injury” is comparable to “bodily injury” under their liability policies.
The plaintiffs want the insurers to pay for millions of headsets.
Dissenting Justice Nathan Hecht rejected the idea. “Want of a cell-phone headset is neither a bodily nor a biological injury,” he wrote.
Plaintiffs said the radiation negatively affects “calcium and ion distribution across the cell membrane; melatonin production; neurological function; DNA single and double strand breaks and chromosome damage; enzyme activities; cell stress and gene transcription; and the permeability of the blood brain barrier.”
The court issued separate opinions for each phone manufacturer, but explained its reasoning in Nokia’s case.