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Falmouth (Mass.) Board of Health Turbine Hearing, May 24, 2012 

Author:  | Health, Human rights, Massachusetts, Noise

7:05 – Opening remarks by Board of Health: Gail Harkness called the meeting to order and read a prepared statement.

7:10 – Public comments:

• Madeline Tundidor of 46 Brush Hill Circle stated that she works the 11-7 shift. The Webb turbine sounds like a fleet of planes going over her house. The whoosh, whoosh is constant. A neighbor of hers has moved because of the turbine.

• Robert Sagerman of 80 Deer Pond Road said that he lives about 1 mile from the Webb turbine. When the wind is from the NNW the pulsing sound from the turbine wakes him up at night. It can be heard and felt. Once awakened, it is hard to go back to sleep.

• Diane Funfar of 27 Ridgeview Drive went to Hull to view the turbine there. The Falmouth turbines are 2.5 times bigger than the Hull turbine. Her husband began treatment for PTSD in 2003 and she noted that there was improvement as a result of the treatment. She noted that since the turbine began spinning his symptoms have become worse than they were before he began treatment. His tolerance to the turbines has decreased as exposure has increased. He is depressed and cannot work outside in the yard at all. Ms. Funfar reports that she has experienced eye discharge that stops when she is away from the turbine. She said they are suffering and need relief.

• Sharon Eddy of 145 Blacksmith Shop Road reported that she has loss of memory, balance, appetite and sleep deprivation and ringing ears as a result of exposure to the turbine.

• Neil Anderson of 211 Blacksmith Shop Road said that he, his wife, Elizabeth and daughter Lee have the following symptoms as a result of exposure to the turbine: sleep deprivation, ears ringing, stress and others which are listed in his written statement. They did not have the symptoms previously. He told the board not to wait too long; their lives were in the board’s hands. He said he knew of 6 town employee affected but concerned with being identified publicly.

• John J. Ford of 372 Blacksmith Shop Road said his health has been declining as a result of exposure to all 3 turbines. He can’t sleep because the thumping and swooshing are very disturbing. It is difficult to get back to sleep when he is woken by the turbine. He has headaches and earaches. He cannot enjoy his garden. His blood pressure is elevated. He would like the DPH to contact him.

• Todd Drummy of 360 Blacksmith Shop Road said that the turbine has had a devastating effect on the health and well-being of his family. The 3 people in his household had all experience sleep interference, headaches, stress and anxiety. He said that some affected abutters fear bullying and harassment and so do not speak out. He urged that the MassDPH begin an investigation.

• Loretta O’Brien of 462 Blacksmith Shop Road said that the Webb turbine affects her health. It disrupts her sleep on occasion and she has lost 3 days of work because of this. Her concentration is diminished. She has called Mr. Webb but he did not respond. She requested an interview with the DPH.

• Mary Zawoysky of 53 Ransom Road said she has chronic sleep deprivation and has a house that is not worth living in as a result of the Woods Hole Turbine. It vibrates her house. She has lived near an airport, a railroad and a dam and has never experienced anything like this. It is like a generator running outside her house. She has tried earplugs but they did not help. She cannot get used to it.

• Nick Bayard appeared as a proxy for Annie Hart Cool of 250 Firetower Road. She has lived in this house for 19 years. She is affected by Wind 1 and the Webb turbine. The persistent audible and inaudible noise disturbs her sleep. She has had cognitive problems and weight gain since the turbines became operational. She is taking several prescription medications. Because of the persistent vibration and continuous hum she avoids home and has paid to sleep somewhere else on occasion. She would like the DPW to contact her for further information.

• Mark J. Cool of 250 Firetower Road said that he has been involved in 9 fatalities in his career as an air traffic controller. Reviews determined he was not at fault in any of these. He was recently deemed to be at fault in a near collision of 2 planes, the first time this judgment has been determined in his 32 year career. He read from a sleep log he had kept of the night before the shift where he made the error, which listed instances of sleep disturbance caused by the turbine.

• Paul Tarr of 110 Ambleside drive listed symptoms he believes are caused by the turbine: headaches, nausea, inability to stay focused, irritability. The symptoms get worse when a strong wind is from the SSW. The only way he can feel better is to leave the house.

• Robbie Laird of 201 Blacksmith Shop Road had sleep problems as soon as Wind 1 went on line. When it is going full tilt, he cannot sleep at all.

• Brian Elder of 161 Blacksmith Shop Road has dizziness and anxiety if Wind 1 goes on without curtailment. He feels he has been put in a desperate situation and will have to leave his house.

• Kathryn Elder of 161 Blacksmith Shop Road said that sleep disruption is her worst symptom.

• Linda Ohkagawa of 821 West Falmouth Highway said that she now has sleep disturbance and wakes several times per night. She has become mentally diminished and irritable. She has ear pain. She attributes these symptoms to the constant whooshing. Her dentist said she is grinding her teeth. She is better when she leaves her house. She slept well when she was away from home for several days. She would like contact with the DPH.

• Kelly Souza of 191 Blacksmith Shop Road said that when the turbines were turned off her kids slept well.

• Joanne Vannah, not an abutter, was ruled out of order as she tried to speak about wind energy.

• Paul Koh of 444 Blacksmith Shop Road said that the Webb turbine interrupted the family’s TV reception. He had video evidence of this. He said his grandfather, whose bedroom is facing the turbine, cannot sleep because of the turbine.

• Colin Murphy of 291 Blacksmith Shop Road said that he has all of the symptoms mentioned including anxiety, depression and anger. He said the turbine affects his children whom, he thought, deserved a safe quite place to sleep.

• Ed Hobart of 476 Blacksmith Shop Road has experienced sleep disturbance, vertigo and migraines as a result of the Webb turbine. His wife has slept in the basement but now they are leaving town.

• Don Cross of 482 Blacksmith Shop Road felt that we should stand up for these people. He is 1700 feet from the turbine and it is getting louder.

• Paul Larusso of 366 Blacksmith Shop Road said that his family spends a lot of time outside and they are not experiencing these things.

• Malcolm Donald of 124 Ambleside Drive said he has tinnitus and his heart tries to beat at the same time as the turbine. The shadow flicker is unsettling. He would like the DPH to contact him.

• Jill Worthington of 337 Blacksmith Shop Road would like DPH contact. The whoop, whoop of the Webb turbine and Wind 1 have caused her to change her habits. Her health and well-being have been affected and she feels she is warding off depression.

• Chuck Eastman of 76 Ambleside Drive said that he can’t sleep in some of the bedrooms in his hose. His wife has tinnitus. The turbines loom over the neighborhood.

• State Representative Timothy Madden offered his assistance.

• Todd Drummy of 360 Blacksmith Shop Road said that topography was a problem. He is not affected by shadow flicker but his neighbor is. He detailed symptoms in his written statement.

• A resident of 100 Ambleside Drive would like confidentiality and wishes the DPH to contact him.

• At 8:27 Gail Harkness adjourned the hearing.

Go to original document: “Minutes: Falmouth (Mass.) Board of Health Turbine Hearing, May 24, 2012”

See video of hearing at Falmouth Community Television

This material is the work of the author(s) indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

The copyright of this material resides with the author(s). As part of its noncommercial educational effort to present the environmental, social, scientific, and economic issues of large-scale wind power development to a global audience seeking such information, National Wind Watch endeavors to observe “fair use” as provided for in section 107 of U.S. Copyright Law and similar “fair dealing” provisions of the copyright laws of other nations. Queries e-mail.

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