Imagine not being able to watch your favorite TV show.
That’s happening to some folks in Bureau County, and they believe wind turbines are to blame.
There are more than 100 wind turbines in the county as part of the Big Sky Wind Turbine Project.
Folks living nearby said when the turbines were turned on last fall, that’s when their TV signal started turning off.
Al Harris said when the turbines near his home are spinning, the TV shows a picture that flickers or no signal at all.
“When the windmills are turning, there’s no TV out of the Quad Cities,” explained Harris, “when the windmills aren’t turning, the TV works fine.”
Neighbor Deb Anderson said they’ve grown to expect it.
“I was watching a TV show the other night and during the middle of the show it went blank,” Anderson said.
Neighbors complained to Big Sky Wind and the company installed new antennas.
Big Sky said the signal works now, but residents said the problem is still there.
“I don’t understand why they can’t fix it,” Harris said, “I don’t want anything special. I just want my TV.”
Neighbors said they plan to keep fighting the problem until it’s fixed for good.
Big Sky officials said a study found their turbines aren’t causing the TV problems. The company believes it’s a result of the digital transition.
“Some interferences, like weather and topography, they wouldn’t have noticed as much during analog when the signal is transmitting at a higher power,” said Blake Connolly with Big Sky.
Big Sky said unfortunately the TV signal is not the strongest in this specific viewing area.
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