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Another turbine burns at Locust Ridge

PHOTO COURTESY / FIRE AND FILM – Flames and smoke are seen billowing from a wind turbine at the Locust Ridge I wind farm.

MAHANOY TWP. – Chalk up another.

In at least the fifth such incident, and second since December, a wind turbine at the Locust Ridge wind farm caught fire and burned this morning.

Fire crews were called to the Locust Ridge 1 Wind Farm in Mahanoy Township around 8:30am as flames and smoke were seen billowing from the turbine immediately next to the one that burned in December.

Firefighters from Mahanoy City’s West End and Good American responded, but could do nothing more than stand by and monitor the area for brush fires because of the turbine’s massive height at 407 feet.

Flames and smoke could be seen for miles as a result of the fire.

The turbine is part of a the Locust Ridge 1 wind farm, owned by Avangrid Renewables of Portland, Oregon and is on Girard Estate land. Locust Ridge 1 was built in 2007.

Saturday’s fire is at least the fifth fire at both of Avangrid’s wind farms on Locust Mountain – Locust Ridge I in Mahanoy Township and Locust Ridge II near Raven Run.

On May 14, 2009, Turbine 12 burned at the Locust Ridge I farm. On March 15, 2014, another fire occurred in the Locust Ridge I farm. On May 21, 2018, a turbine was damaged by fire in the Locust Ridge II farm. Most recently, on Dec. 28, 2020, a turbine was destroyed at the Locust Ridge I farm.