A large group of worried residents and members of the Huron East Against Turbines presented council with information regarding the noise coming from 15 new wind turbines in McKillop Township, which they say are keeping some residents up at random hours of the night.
HEAT members Jeanne Melady and Gerry Ryan expressed to the Huron East council their concerns with a presentation pointing out what they believe are inconsistencies relating to turbines, particularly the St. Columban Wind Project. Approximately 25 residents affected by the project joined the HEAT group in the council meeting September 22. The two HEAT members told the council that there are several people in the area who are upset with the noise connected to the large fans, which generate electricity. In addition, Ryan, whom also lives in McKillop said some people have stressed to him they cannot sleep because three to four times a week loud interruptions in the middle of the night are keeping them awake. Melady and Ryan stated there are six main areas of concerns by the locals who live near the turbines:
- Noise during the day
- Noise causing wakefulness at night
- Shadow flickering from the blades
- Vibration in the home
- Low frequency noise
- Loss of rural environment
“I guess we’re using (Huron East) as a conduit between us and the wind company because we simply can’t get the answers for citizens that are being affected,” said Ryan. “People are being woken up and having headaches.”
The frustration continues for Ryan he said. He claims that he’s contacted the wind turbine company three times with no response. He would like someone to investigate the levels of sound because the days with heavy noise are not always constant he explained.
“It’s not like you’re being affected every day, as wind changes direction and the environment changes, humid days seem to be different and worse than a dry day. When the sun is shining, I think it keeps the noise closer to the ground,” said Ryan. “I don’t know, I’m not a scientist.”
Ryan confirmed the presentation was to provide council with awareness of what is specifically happening in other areas.
If possible, Ryan said he would like to gather all the people who are troubled by the wind turbine company and conduct a sound study, which the farmer believes, are mandated for people like himself.
“It would be ideal if they would shut them off when people are normally a sleep, which would be from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m.,” Ryan said.
Both members of HEAT said they would like to be directed by council of where to go or what organization to call, so they can explain the problems the community is having with the turbines.
“We don’t want to keep calling numbers and nothing happens, it’s time consuming and you can spend a whole morning making complaints,” said Melady.
She said council will carry out a report to the company including some of the concerns of the residents and it will be tabled at the next council meeting.