May 6, 2011

NextEra says broken wind turbine blade removed

By Caitlin Mullen, Daily Chronicle, 5 May 2011

SHABBONA – Officials with NextEra Energy said a broken blade on a wind turbine has been removed and the cause of the shattered blade will be investigated. With weight limits on county and township roads this spring, NextEra spokesman Steve Stengel said Thursday that the company had to wait until those weight postings were removed before a large truck with a crane could drive on the roads to get to the blade, at Shabbona Road between Keslinger and Gurler roads.

The DeKalb County Highway Department removed its spring road posting signs for county roads April 8, which had restricted traffic weighing more than 33,000 pounds, County Engineer Bill Lorence said.

Stengel, who said broken blades occur occasionally, with one happening in May 2010, said the blade was removed in the last 1½ weeks. It shattered in mid-March. The company has operated 145 turbines in DeKalb and Lee counties since late 2009. A group of local residents called Citizens for Open Government is opposed to the wind farm and is suing to have it shut down.

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