Safety and Wind Generators 

For the sake of everyone's safety and to insure a future for Wind Energy in our communities we all have to think about safety!

Several City Counsels throughout the US are reviewing their ordinances on wind generators.  Some are making them tougher, some are adding ordinances, while others are willing to cut some slack on the harsh ordnance currently in place.   We need to prove that it is safe to own and operate a wind generator in your back yard and the only way we can do that is if we think about safety when building and installing our birds.

The reason for this page is due to the numerous questions I have been getting here lately about some really dangerous ideas that are getting mixed into the renewable energy market once again.
When I say once again I am talking about the 1980's when the Government put out grants to assist homeowners in getting wind generators.  Once that happened everyone wanted a piece of the pie.  There were all kinds of companies that popped up in the 80's, each one claimed they had the best product out there.  Some of these companies still remain today supplying good quality products while others just vanished.  It was some of the fly by night companies along with the so called professional installers and homeowners that mounted some dangerous setups are the reason some areas have such stiff ordinances against wind generators. 

Lets take a "basic" look at some known ordinances and why they are in place: (please note that I am not going to quote from any certain ordinance).

The Fall Zone Ordinance. 
In place because of the first homeowner OR professional installer didn't use the right equipment when erecting a wind generator tower, then at some point the tower fell going through someone's property.  At that point every surrounding community that heard of the event joined the band wagon to write an ordinance against a wind generator in their town or zoning area.  It just takes one bozo to ruin it for everyone, and it has always been that way, and that will never change!

The Clear Zone, also known as The Debris Zone and many many other names.
This one is about the harshest that I have ran across.  For example to fly a 10 foot rotor in some areas you have to own all the property for 1/4 mile in all directions.  And how many of us own a 1/2 mile square?  Exactly! That's why I call this one harsh.
It's in place because of wooden blades and some metal speed control tips used on wooden and fiberglass blades.
This one almost explains itself, but you all know me. ;)
I remember a few incidents that brought this harsh ordinance into play in a few areas.  One that comes to mind is a wind generator that threw its metal speed control/governor off the end of a wooden blade over 1/4 mile and it went through a City Councilman's window.  That ordinance went into place real quick.  I bet it still would have been written but maybe not so fast if it had been someone else's house.
Another one was a run down wooden blade that had not been cared for filled up with water and started running ruff.  It was believed that the vibration caused the mount to break which allowed a blade to strike the tower, sending the top blade flying through the air like a tomahawk which ended up going through the roof of a two story house and came to rest in the hallway.  It was a little over 5 blocks the way it was explained.
That was a lack of maintenance but still ruined it for everyone just the same.

The Sound/Noise Ordinance.
In place in some areas because some blades sound like helicopters hovering in back yards.  It only take one neighbor that can't sleep that has to get up at 4:00am to complain and it will be on the agenda at the next Council Meeting.
If you are running a loud rotor then think about shutting it down at night or you may not be running it much longer.

There are several more ordinances out there and like I said many of them are being reduce, remove, overruled, etc.  If we use our heads when building and installing wind generators and do all we can or all we know how to do to insure safety. Accidents can and do happen in every aspect of life and in the event of an OOPS there is not near as much said about a fluke event as there is an all out oversight or lack of paying attention to detail.  

By the year 2020 Electric is going to be at an all time high.  The wind has always been free and is becoming a more acceptable source of power all the time, but remember what I have said a couple of time on this page. "it only takes one to ruin it for everyone."  Don't be that one.
It is up to you or the person that installs your system to make sure that it is done as sturdy and safely as possible.

Click the link below to read some things not to do.

Read some of the things I personally feel you SHOULD NOT do.

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