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35-metre wind turbine collapses in Bradworthy

By NDJPhilippa  |  Posted: January 30, 2013

  • The collapsed turbine at East Ash Farm in Bradworthy. Photo by Phil Ashmore

  • The collapsed turbine at East Ash Farm in Bradworthy.

  • The collapsed turbine at East Ash Farm in Bradworthy.

  • The collapsed turbine at East Ash Farm in Bradworthy.

  • The turbine collapsed at East Ash Farm in Bradworthy. Location indicated by red 'A' pointer on map.

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A 35-metre turbine has collapsed near Holsworthy leaving the tower lying on the ground.

The turbine at East Ash Farm in Bradworthy was erected in 2010 by Dulas Ltd.

Dulas confirmed this morning that an "incident" had occurred with the turbine and said the situation is currently being investigated.

A spokesman for Dulas said: "We can confirm that an incident occurred with a turbine in the Bradworthy area of North Devon in the early hours of Sunday morning.

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"We can reassure the local community that due to the isolated location of the turbine, no one was put at risk and we are currently working hard to establish the precise cause of the incident.

"Our technical team is one of the most experienced in the UK. They are working alongside the turbine manufacturer to conduct a full root-cause analysis investigation.

"We will continue to keep communication open and provide updates as and when we have further information.”

The Endurance Wind Power E-3120 turbine, which was the first model of its kind to be erected in the country, has a five year warranty.

It is believed the turbine collapsed during high winds in the early hours of Sunday.

But Bradworthy Parish Council, who are fiercely against the proliferation of turbines in the Bradworthy area, don't believe the weather was that extreme.

Councillor Keith Tomlin, who spoke on behalf of the parish council, said: “The collapse of the less than 3 year old wind turbine at East Ash occurred during a night of unexceptional weather for the area.

"We are relieved to note that no one was injured but had this happened in daytime there was a chance of serious injury to workers on the farm where it was located or to the public on the road nearby.

"Of greater concern is that Torridge District Council have recently approved the erection of a second turbine of the same size and manufacture at this location that would have been closer to the public road.

"A number of similar turbines have been approved and erected locally and the safety of these turbines must now be questioned, together with that of the much larger ones that have also been approved but not yet built.

"This incident must be a wakeup call for Torridge District Council in their policy towards wind turbines and until the result of any investigation into this incident has taken place they would be prudent to halt the erection of any other wind turbines in the district."

Marcus, who didn't wish to give his surname, lives three miles from the site and drove past the collapsed turbine this morning.

He said: "It was flat on the ground, there were about half a dozen men in high vis jackets in the field looking at it."

Others took to Twitter to share news of the collapsed turbine.

@putfordpom wrote: "Turbine down due to record high winds & sheered bolts. Unprecedented."

Although no one was injured during the incident the Health and Safety Executive have confirmed they are looking into it but it has not been reported to them officially.

The owners of East Ash Farm have recently been granted planning permission by Torridge District Council to erect a second turbine of the same make.

At the planning committee meeting in December, where permission was given, Joanna Maynard, from Stags acting as an agent for the farmers, confirmed the extra turbine would mean the farm’s 350 dairy herd could increase by 200.

It was also confirmed at the meeting the turbine will only be 130 metres from the nearest property, rather than the distance of 385 metres stated in the planning report.

The Journal has been unable to contact the owners of East Ash Farm.

Do you have any photos of the collapsed turbine? Email them to emma.glanfield@localworld.co.uk. Do you have any information about the turbine? Contact us on 01271 347441.

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6 comments

  • Tigger2  |  February 04 2013, 1:26AM

    Planning application PA12/11885 for a massive turbine above the hamlet of New Mills, Ladock in Cornwall is worrying in light of these recent turbine collapses, its' siting on a slope which goes down towards the hamlet in the region of 450 to 550 metres from peoples homes!

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  • Stork  |  January 29 2013, 4:04PM

    Check this " complication " out. http://tinyurl.com/agh6pv2

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  • letigre  |  January 29 2013, 3:38PM

    …no more turbines…… Whether the turbine collapsed in 'high winds' or during 'unexceptional weather' is largely irrelevant. If turbines are to be sited with the UK, they need to be able to withstand all UK weather conditions. The SW Councils can't pick and choose which aspect of a wind turbine they feel meets whatever requirements/guidelines they have set. The turbine may contribute to reduced Carbon Emissions and therefore go some way to meeting renewable targets, it may not. Again that's irrelevant. What is relevant is that ignoring calls over safety with regards to siting turbines too close to residential homes, schools, roadways etc is potentially dangerous. The developer and council have been lucky on this occasion, but as turbines are getting bigger and closer who is monitoring the maintenance regimes? Who is checking parts for rust or signs of sheer? Who is going to liable in the event that someone is seriously injured or worse. The SW Councils need to be urgently assessing their policies regarding onshore turbines before there are questions raised over potential negligence.

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  • happygutz  |  January 29 2013, 2:04PM

    and if one wind turbine should accentually fall, there'd be .............

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  • 2ladybugs  |  January 29 2013, 12:25PM

    Oh dear, oh blow, that nasty, ugly waste of space fell over. Just as well nobody was injured otherwise that would add to the fact that these useless bits of kits shouldn't be encouraged.

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  • Stork  |  January 29 2013, 12:16PM

    Complication ". Is that windfarm speak for the b####y thing fell over ?

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