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Transformer ruptures at Wethersfield wind turbine  

Megan Gollwitzer, spokesperson for the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, said approximately 400 gallons of transformer oil, a mineral oil product, was released into the area immediately surrounding the base of the wind turbine. Approximately 45 tons of affected soil from the area where the spill occurred was collected and removed for off-site disposal at a regulated landfill, Gollwitzer said.

Credit:  By Kristy Kibler, Warsaw's Country Courier, warsawscountrycourier.tumblr.com 26 January 2012 ~~

A transformer problem caused a one-day shut down of a Noble Environmental Power wind turbine in Wethersfield last week.

“On Jan. 16, a transformer failed at the base of a wind turbine,” said Brett Hastings, asset management director for Noble. “The transformer was replaced, and the turbine resumed operation that day.”

The wind turbine in question is #55 of the Noble project, located on Route 78 near Maxwell Road.

Megan Gollwitzer, spokesperson for the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, said approximately 400 gallons of transformer oil, a mineral oil product, was released into the area immediately surrounding the base of the wind turbine.

Noble promptly contacted the DEC to report the spill and took initial measures to contain the spill by applying spill-absorbent material in the affected area, Gollwitzer said. The DEC then immediately dispatched spill response staff to the site to assess the situation and monitor cleanup.

Noble also contracted a private environmental consulting firm and an excavating company on Jan.16 to complete further environmental cleanup work at the site.

Approximately 45 tons of affected soil from the area where the spill occurred was collected and removed for off-site disposal at a regulated landfill, Gollwitzer said.

DEC spill responders reported that spill material remained contained in the general area of the wind turbine and did not infiltrate off-site waterways or drainage areas.

“Due to the frozen ground at the time of the spill, seepage into sub-surface soils was minimal. The majority of cleanup work was completed by Jan. 17,” Gollwitzer said. “DEC is continuing to monitor environmental conditions at the site.”

The DEC doesn’t project any long-term environmental impacts as a result of the spill. Hastings said the transformer issue caused no injuries and no lasting damage to the turbine.

“There was no long-term fire—it just caused a malfunction, and (the turbine) went out, and the cleanup began,” he said. “It really wasn’t a major issue.”

Source:  By Kristy Kibler, Warsaw's Country Courier, warsawscountrycourier.tumblr.com 26 January 2012

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

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