The price of progress is now considered a pain to some ears in Shallowater. Some folks there are upset about the new wind energy turbines now being used by Shallowater ISD.
The school district turned them on back in January. They’re meant to save tax dollars, but some say the by-product, sound, is too much.
Chad Dugger, a resident in the area says, “I can hear them when they turn off and turn back on. It’s not too much fun living here anymore.”
The wind turbine is less than 300 feet from Dugger’s back yard.
When one of these wind turbines goes up near residences, the standard is about 150 feet away from a home. Dugger’s house is 225 feet away, but he says you still can hear the turbines.
“It’s extremely loud in the house I can hear it at night even with the TV on in the living room,” says Dugger.
Another area resident, who want to remain anonymous, says, “It’s a pulsating sound just a ‘whooooo’, that’s the part that bothers you.”
Phil Warren, superintendent for Shallowater ISD says, “We tried to put them outside of that threshold. Most of ours are within 200 or more feet within residences and so we felt like we had done our homework there. That’s real subjective.”
Combined, Warren says the five giants are saving Shallowater ISD thousands of dollars.
“70,000 to 75,00 per year that we’re producing our own electricity so that comes directly off our bill,” says Warren.
To some living nearby the sound is not a problem.
“Most of the time sort of harmonic you know, just kinda “˜swish, swish’ every once in a while,” says Shallowater resident Dawayne Pounds.
Resident Amy Garland adds, “It’s just a humming sound, not a bad sound.”
The Shallowater superintendent tells us because of the concern the district is now looking into hiring a consultant to test the wind turbines’ noise levels. But nothing will be decided until this month’s school board meeting.
We’re also told about a dozen are expected to voice their opinion at this month’s meeting.
2 March 2007
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