Brownsville, WI family diary: living with turbines (Part II)

The Brownsville Diary: Entries of a noise log kept by a Brownsville, Wisconsin family living 3/4 miles east of South Byron in Fond Du Lac County, Wisconsin. The new wind turbines have just gone on line there. This log covers the time period from Apr 28, 2008 to May 13, 2008.

This family began the log on March 3, 2008. To view the log entries from March 3 to April 27, click here.  

 April 28, 2008
Quite peaceful today

April 29, 2008
6AM. Turbine turning slow with little sound.
3PM Turbine not turning.
It has been a peaceful today, however now, 10:30 PM turbine #4 is back to it's rather loud sound, somewhat like a large train engine under load with the whooshing sound of the blades.
It is midnight and I can hear #4 from my dining room.

April 30, 2008
5:30 AM low noise.
3 PM. Moderate noise.
9:30 PM. Jet sound our like having your car window open 1/8" while driving down the
free way...annoying.

May 1, 2008
6 AM. Fairly quiet

May 2, 2008
6 AM. Not much sound.
3 PM. Louder.
7 PM. Wind is from the south or a little south west. This is the loudest sound in 3 or 4 days. We can hear turbines 4, 6 & 73. Number 4 sounds like a jet flying over, number 73 a deep sounding thunk. Sitting at the computer at 11 PM. I can hear turbine sounds. Our oldest son (age 33) said, "When it is calm it sounds like the generator humming. When it is windy I hear air going through the blades".

May 3, 2008
6 AM. I have not been outside yet this morning, but I can hear turbine #4 or #73 (or both) while in the house. Someone chose 50 db of sound as being a standard or OK or as an acceptable sound level. Whatever the level by whomever it was, this is not acceptable.
5:30 PM. Loud jet sound. I can hear turbine #4 from our mailbox which is another 150' added to 1560' and the length of our house. Weekends seem to be loud. I can hear low sound of #4 inside the house.
11 PM. Loud jet sound. I can hear #4 and #73.

May 4, 2008
7AM. Turbine is turning slow and quiet.
12:30 PM. 30' from the house door turbine #4 sounds like the F16's flying over at the NASCAR race at Brooklyn, Michigan. I can also hear the sound in the house as I write this. I can also hear turbine #73, keeping in mind that 73 is 2480'away from the house.
Does that suggest that the 1000' or 1800' is not enough set back from the turbines that energy companies and the PSC say make little or no noise? It sounds like a political campaign: Tell the lies now and hope the constituents forget or deal with reality later.
Tonight turbine #73 and #4 seemed to be fighting with each other. They both are loud. I walked closer to turbine #4 so that I was 1350' away. That meant I was 2690' from turbine #73. That's 100' more than half a mile away and it was louder than turbine #4.
The wind at ground level was straight from the S-SW. In the inside front of the house I can hear turbine #73. In my family room in the back of the house (56' long) I hear turbine #6 or #4. It is not the sound of a jet flying over or a whoosh, but more like hearing your heart beat with a stethoscope.

May 5, 2008
5:30 AM. Same sound as last night.
6:30 PM How nice. It is calm and all the turbines are still. The robins and cardinals are happy too I hear them chirping. I had not noticed them when the turbines are loud. I will pay closer attention to listen for that in the future.

May 6, 2008
5:15AM. I can hear turbines 4 and 73 quite loud.
4:30 PM. Turning quietly.
11:00 PM. I have the kitchen door and combination door open. It is loud with the two turbines sounding like they are fighting to see who can win at being the loudest.
11:30 PM. I am sitting by the computer. I can hear turbine #73 grinding away. Remember that one is 2480' away from the house. Usually I get past the large pine tree 30' from the house before the sound gets my attention. Tonight the turbine sound was loud on the porch just outside the house door.

May 7, 2008
6:15 AM. Again the loud sound right outside the door. For the people that say
"Oh, you will get used to it", you are wrong. The sound is getting more aggravating and annoying.
3:20 PM. I have been neglecting turbine #6 for a while. I won't today. At the moment it is louder than turbine #4. In case you don't care to go way back to the beginning of this log turbine #6 is about ¾ of mile away or about 3960' away + or - a few feet. That would give the impression that a 1000' set back approved by the WI PSC is certainly insufficient and inept.
11:15 PM. Turbine #4 is moderately grinding away. Our 13 year old son had some late school work to do. He went to bed at 10:00PM. He should be tired. At 10:40 he came down stairs and to our bedroom where I was talking on the phone. He had an over sized piece of paper that he had drawn a picture of a wind turbine on. Yes, he should have been sleeping, however he couldn't sleep. He had opened his window because it was nice outside and could hear the turbines #73 and #4 from his open window. Probably turbine
#73 because that window faces the south toward turbine #73. He also had a headache. This morning at the table for breakfast he also complained that he still had a little bit of a headache.

May 8, 2008
5:45 AM. Turbines are slow moving and quiet.
10:00 PM. Quiet.

May 9, 2008
6:00 AM. Only a few of the 86 turbines are turning. From somewhere on my property or the center of the road I can see all 86 of turbines in this wind farm. It is very peaceful and quiet.
10:30 PM. Peaceful and quiet. It is rare.

May 10, 2008
6:30 AM. Turbine #4 is turning slow. I can hear the turbine while walking in the back of our property.
11:30 PM. I can hear #73.

May 11, 2008
7:30 AM. My wife did not sleep well last night.
The turbines are not very loud at this time.
12:15 PM. to 5:00 PM. The wind is from the north with the sound of a jet flying over, very annoying.
9:30 PM. I can hear the beating sound of turbine #4 while sitting at the computer.
10:20 PM. The turbine is loud and violent, ripping through the night sky. Late this afternoon I took a pain killer for my headache. I can't think of when I took a pain-killer for a headache. At least a year as it is extremely rare for me to have a head-ache. I did not sleep well. This has happened several times when hearing the turbines from inside the house.

May 12, 2008
5:30 AM. Moderate sound.
4:45 PM. I can hear turbine #4 over road traffic in front of our house.
11:00 PM. Jet sound.

May 13, 2008
5:20 AM I can hear turbine #73 from in the bathroom.
6:15 AM. I am walking in the yard and can hear a number of the turbines. I walked away from #73 toward #4. When I was about 2737' from turbine #73 it is still very loud, but now is close to the sound of #4.
3:30 PM. Turbine continues to be loud.
4 to 7 PM. I worked in the garden. There were times when it sounded like a Chinook helicopter doing heavy work. Very loud.
9:00 PM. Turbines #4 and #73 are ripping through the sky. At times #73 is loud like blasting in a stone quarry. A loud, pounding sound. I hear them while at the computer once in the house.

Brownsville Diary To May 13

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MAY 13 2008
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