Wind turbine destroyed by… wind

The Telegraph reports:

Two blades were ripped from the 18m high turbine in the Scottish Highlands and thrown up to 60 yards away after it was hit by 40mph gales. A third was left badly buckled.

The incident has led to calls for all wind turbines to be removed from school playgrounds in the Highlands as the council’s safety trigger for turbines to be shut down currently stands at 80mph winds. According to the Met Office using the Beaufort scale, wind speed over 74mph is classed as a hurricane.

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11 thoughts on “Wind turbine destroyed by… wind”

  1. In the real world, he who selects the components and design of a system owns the consequences of the system. However, when the government makes the selection, We the People pay the price and the government gets off without a negative consequence. In fact, because of the guaranteed built in failure mode, the government gets to do more of the same at a higher cost to We the People – again without negative consequence. This kind of scam has been going on from the start of the first government.

    Question: why do we keep feeding them?

  2. I live in Tom Green County Texas, the home of the densest population of wind generators on earth……and it’s windy here all the time….and they make them here in this town, and they still do not make any money on the deal.

  3. This is not an isolated incident. I know people that work on wind farms and they have shown me pictures of wind damaged units right here in the good ol USA.

  4. Y’all are forgetting the priorities here. This accident proves that all schools, playgrounds, and other amenities frequented by the public and within the danger zone of windmills must be immediately shut down and moved away. What’s more important, reducing the awful and imminent threat of global warming over the next hundred years (cue the background video of starving polar bears, sinking islands, etc, maybe the old American Indian with a tear rolling down his cheek) or not disturbing human beings? 😉

  5. Let’s remember that in order to provide a meaningful amount of electricity, you need a lot of windmills covering lots and lots of acreage. It is going to be hard to locate them away from people –and that is dangerous.

  6. While your statement is true, it does lead to further questions about why the designers made the choices they did. Car crashes became less survivable when they replaced most of the steel with lighter weight materials. The major impetus for the switch? Government mandated MPG targets. The question is, why were these specific turbines made with inadequate materials or methods. If it’s a smiple quality assurance issue then the specific company is called into question along with any government subsidy they’ve received. However, if the materials used were chosen due to a necessary trade-off of durability than it is an indictment of wind energy as it currently exists. My biggest complaint about subsidies and mandates of a technical nature is that they tend to hide that sort of limitation which would normally prevent a product from entering the market in the first place.

  7. Every form of energy production produces accidents. Every manufacturing and fabrication process is vulnerable to failure. This kind of accident can happen in any setting, alas. By itself, it’s an indictment of the fabrication process rather than the concept of wind energy.
    There are plenty of other indictments for wind energy, though. It also makes sense to get the turbines away from areas with a lot of people; we don’t have the boilers for electrical plants on playgrounds, after all.

  8. 40mph is a gale wind? We get 40mph, or greater, winds in most of our summer thunderstorms here in Florida,

  9. Hey, so the turbine managed to meet 50% of it’s designed lateral force strength. That’s something, no? Oh and buy this year’s newest model. We’ve made a few improvements like attaching safety cables to the blades to keep them from flying so far when falling off in moderate winds.

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