Library filed under Structural Failure from California
The federal Bureau of Land Management confirmed it ordered the halt of operations at the Ocotillo Wind facility following Sept. 16's collapse of a 300-foot wind turbine.
“All turbines at the facility have been shut down pending completion of the root cause analysis. Siemens Gamesa is the turbine manufacturer and is leading the investigation into the root cause,” Siemens spokesperson Myca Welch stated in an email Thursday afternoon. Welch did not immediately provide information on when the facility was taken offline or a timeline on when it might resume operation.
Another of the 112 Siemens turbines at the Ocotillo Wind Energy facility in California has been destroyed. An investigation is underway to determine the cause of the failure.
Residents in Ocotillo are voicing concerns after yet another wind turbine collapse at the Ocotillo Wind Energy facility. There were no injuries or damage to other structures when the 300-foot-tall turbine crashed to the desert floor at the trouble-prone facility on Thursday, September 16. But residents are raising serious questions over public safety at the site, which produces energy to SDG&E to power the San Diego region.
About 5:50 p.m., Palm Springs police said that 19th Avenue between McLane Street and Karen Drive was closed because a windmill was spinning out of control.
Three Ocotillo residents went before the Board of Supervisors Tuesday.
Siemens conducted a “preliminary root cause analysis,” which showed that the machine had “cracks in the structural member of the interior of the blade” (specifically, the shear web). In turn, over time, the blade failed and then struck the tower, which then collapsed.
Both this project and Siemens have a history of serious problems, however, leading to questions of whether federal or state oversight is needed to protect public safety. Ocotillo Wind, built by Pattern Energy, previously had a wind turbine fire in January 2015 and an 11-ton blade hurled off onto a public trail in May 2013, among other mechanical failures, as we reported at the time.
Wind turbine #126 collapse at Pattern Energy's Ocotillo Express LLC on November 21, 2016. The 265 MW facility, operational since July 2013, consists of 112 German-made Siemens turbines. The Siemens 2.37 MW-108 stand about 500-feet tall.
Kern County firefighters worked to keep a wind turbine fire from spreading to the dry grass below. The project was located in the Oak Creek area off Tehachapi-Willow Springs Road. Oak Creek resident Diana Palmer shared these photos of the effort.
The Oak Creek area east of Tehachapi saw a quick response from KCFD on June 25 after a wind turbine started a grass fire.
The fire was on "the motor of a high windmill," and burning debris was falling to the ground, according to CalFire. As of 7:20 p.m., the windmill was almost completely burned on top.
An out of control wind turbine has caused a road closure in Mojave.
It may cost Rim of the World Unified School District somewhere between $22,000 and $53,000 to satisfy state concerns about the structural integrity of the four steel poles supporting Rim of the World High School's wind turbines.
A wind turbine caught fire at the wind farm outside Ocotillo.
One of the 112 wind turbines in Ocotillo Wind Express caught fire on January 15 and smoke was seen fuming from the turbine for hours. Many long-time critics of the wind farm project had cited the likelihood of a wind turbine catching fire as one of numerous safety concerns.
The cause of the fire is still being investigated, said Imperial County Fire Chief Tony Rouhotas, and it may be some time before the cause is determined.
Infigen takes down their scorched Kumeyaay Wind turbine following a December 16, 2013 fire which sparked a brush fire on the land leased from the Campo tribe. The 25 Gamesa 1.5 MW turbines were first installed in late 2005 and suffered a still unexplained catastrophic failure during a storm in December 2009 which resulted in all 75 blades and generators being replaced in early 2010. An Infigen v Gamesa lawsuit was settled last year. The Gamesa turbine that burst into flames in December was about 4 years old. These photos show the burning turbine and its dismantling. Note the proximity of homes.
The Kumeyaay Wind farm that supplies electricity to San Diego has been idled indefinitely after a fire heavily damaged one its 25 turbines, officials at the Campo Indian Reservation said Tuesday.
Yesterday’s (Dec 16) explosion and brush fire sparked by a Gamesa wind turbine owned by Infigen at the Kumeyaay Wind facility in Campo, California has ignited new questions about the safety of wind turbines in this fire-prone region, where several of the worst wildfires in California history have previously scorched hundreds of thousands of acres.