NaturEner, which owns and operates the Glacier Wind wind farms in Glacier and Toole counties, is offering a $2,500 reward for information on the gunshot vandalism of one of its turbines.
One of the turbines located in the Glacier County portion of the Glacier Wind 2 farm was shot sometime in mid- April. The bullet punched through the outer shell of the turbine and damaged a major cable leading to the generator, causing more than $100,000 in damage.
“Whoever is responsible for this senseless act of vandalism endangered our employees, whom actually work inside the part of the turbine that was shot, and our neighbors, as well as damaging a valuable piece of renewable energy infrastructure,” said Gabriel Vaca, vice president of NaturEner. “Anyone with information about this incident should contact NaturEner and the Glacier County Sheriff.”
The turbine stopped generating power on the afternoon of April 17, and the bullet damage was discovered on April 23 by repair technicians, who reported the incident to law enforcement officials.
The intense heat caused by the power surging through the cable melted the bullet, and sheriff’s deputies have found no witnesses who saw or heard the gunshot.
Persons with information about this crime should contact NaturEner at 406-339-5201.
The Glacier Wind 2 facility was commissioned in 2009. It generates more than 100 megawatts of electricity, enough to power more than 35,000 homes.
NaturEner is a significant contributor to the local and Montana economy, with more than $875 million of investments in the state. NaturEner owns and operates approximately 62 percent of the existing wind power generation in Montana, enough to power 116,000 homes.
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