With the Wonthaggi renewable energy festival on this coming weekend it will be a good opportunity for visitors to see a wind farm in action.
The Wonthaggi 6-turbine wind farm was constructed in 2005/6 and not long after had a rotor bearing failure which required replacement, a major task. The turbines overlook the Townsends’ nursery so they not only hear the low-frequency noise, which also permeates their nearby residence, but also all the mechanical noises.
Recently the turbine to the right in the picture started to make grinding mechanical noises but the operators apparently fixed that problem. Today, in a mild breeze, one of the turbine blades in the six-year-old wind farm broke up with the blade infill material flung afar whilst the fibreglass covering was left flapping in the wind. The turbine was stopped but the operator continued to allow the other turbines to rotate. Under circumstances like this it is appropriate that the wind farm be shut down and a safety audit carried out; this is done overseas.
This poor-performing wind farm follows in the footsteps of the other poor-performing South Gippsland wind farm at Toora.
Of course this wind farm would not be approved under the current Victorian Guidelines as it is within 5 kilometres of the coast and turbines are less than 2 kilometres from houses.
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