Third wind turbine blade breaks in East Central Illinois

blade_breakPaxton Record
OAKWOOD — For the third time in 17 months, a wind turbine blade manufactured by General Electric has broken off at an East Central Illinois wind farm. The latest incident occurred about 9 p.m. Nov. 20 in Vermilion County at the California Ridge Wind Farm operated by Chicago-based Invenergy. Another turbine blade broke in that same wind farm in November 2012, following a June 2012 blade break at the Settlers Trail Wind Farm near Sheldon, operated by Chicago-based E.On Climate & Renewables.

All three blades were on 1.6-megawatt turbines manufactured by GE. “We are working with GE, the turbine manufacturer, to determine the cause of this incident,” a statement from Invenergy said Friday. Last March, GE issued a statement saying that an “isolated manufacturing issue” caused the two wind turbines to break in 2012. GE said it had “reviewed the wind farm fleets at both sites to ensure their continued reliability and performance” and “have addressed the manufacturing issue to prevent this from happening in the future.”

GE officials did not immediately return a call requesting comment on the latest incident. Invenergy said the blade broke off and fell to the ground near the base of the turbine, which is located near the intersection of 2150 North Road and 900 East Road near Oakwood. Read article

8 thoughts on “Third wind turbine blade breaks in East Central Illinois

  1. Apologies if Mich report already posted:

    DTE halts wind park work as probe begins
    Nov 12 – McClatchy-Tribune Regional News –
    Nicholas Grenke
    The Huron Daily Tribune,
    Bad Axe, Mich.

    Work at DTE’s Echo Wind Park has stopped as the energy company tries to find the reason why a [GE] wind turbine blade broke at the park last week.

    • when I click on the link i get “The page you requested does not exist. For your convenience, a search was performed using the query article 13 11 dte halts wind park work probe begins.” but there are a couple on links when you google it, but they won’t work… funny

  2. Another turbine blade breaks in Huron County
    Tribune Staff Writer
    Published: Friday, November 8, 2013 3:49 PM EST

    CHANDLER TOWNSHIP — A wind turbine blade broke at DTE Energy’s new Echo Wind Park near Caseville sometime before 8:30 a.m. Friday.

    Part of the turbine blade was on the ground below the structure at noon Friday as DTE Energy’s Dennis Buda was at the turbine checking for safety concerns. DTE stopped other the wind turbines at Echo Wind Park because of concerns after the blade failure.

    “My husband said look out the bathroom room window this morning to see it,” said Tracey Powell, who lives about a half mile from the broken turbine. “The DTE guys started getting there around 8:30 a.m.”

    Powell said that the broken blade didn’t worry her much.

    “They got their work cut out for them, that’s all,” she said. “I’m not a fan of the windmills but they’re here to stay. We got live with them — they’re safe enough away.”

    Winds were blowing at 10-15 mph in the area during the past 24 hours according to the National Weather Service.

    DTE Energy spokesman Scott Simons said that the incident was under investigation Friday morning.

    “There were no injuries and no property damage other than the turbine itself,” Simons said.

    It was the third turbine to break in Huron County in the last 10 months and the second turbine owned by DTE to break down in that time. In March, a turbine blade in Sigel Township broke because of a manufacturing defect, said turbine supplier General Electric, according to a presentation by Buda at a Huron County Planning Commission meeting last month.

    In addition, a turbine was struck by lightning near Minden City at the Michigan Wind Project 2 in September. The turbine, owned by Exelon Energy also lost a blade and was set to be back online this week.

    “Well, I would have said that this was a rare occurrence before the first one,” Simons said when asked how often a blade fails. “We want to get to the root cause of this.”

    The Echo Wind Park was approved in November 2012 and was set to be completed by the end of this month, according to DTE program manager Michael Serafin. At the Huron County Planning Commission meeting Wednesday, Serafin said that 50 out of the 70 wind turbines at the site were up and running.

    Buda said that part of the blade debris was removed Friday. The turbine is on North Farver Road near the intersection of Dunn Road.

  3. DTE halts wind park work as probe begins

    Published: Tuesday, November 12, 2013 7:21 AM EST

    Tribune Staff Writer

    CHANDLER TOWNSHIP — Work at DTE’s Echo Wind Park has stopped as the energy company tries to find the reason why a wind turbine blade broke at the park last week.

    “There’s not a timetable on this,” DTE spokesman Scott Simons said Monday. “We’re not going to put anyone or anything at risk until we get to the bottom of this.

    The 60 turbines that have already been constructed at the planned 70-turbine wind park will not operate until a reason for the recent malfunction at North Farver Road near the intersection of Dunn Road is discovered. DTE had been generating power from each of the turbines after they were completed, according to an Oct. 23 news release.

    In addition, Simons said that construction on the remaining 10 turbines will stop. The remaining turbines are in various stages of completion. There is no plan in place for the temporary workers who are staying in Huron County building the turbines.

    Construction on the Echo Wind Park was scheduled to be finished by the end of November.

    “We’re not going to continue construction until we know what happened,” Simons said. “They’re not going to start back up until we know what went wrong.

    Completed wind turbine parks in the area will continue to be operational.

    The investigation into the broken turbine blade could take months. In March, a DTE-owned wind turbine in Sigel Township broke and the final analysis on the cause wasn’t presented to Huron County Commissioners until an October meeting.

    DTE project manager Dennis Buda said at that meeting that the blade in Sigel Township failed because of a manufacturer’s defect due to uneven heating conditions at a production plant in Brazil.

    Simons said that DTE is taking the broken wind turbine blade very seriously.

    “We’re working with GE engineers; it’s still a work in progress,” he said.

  4. To Barb, I know you read everything. I saw a post from you a while ago but I can’t find it.
    this is a map of the resources for Michigan. You had said something about the wind in Michigan being high…….. It’s not so Barb, just another weasel lie…….lol………. We have very low resources of wind for Michigan. I hope this map comes up here. if not I’ll provide the link for it.

  5. Yes, I know that Michigan does not have good wind resources. IWTs are in Michigan because of the state renewable energy mandate. And it dosen’t matter to eco-nuts if something works or not.

    In the Illinois situation, if you install IWTs in Tornado Alley they won’t last too long.

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