Published on June 16th, 2013 | by Joshua S Hill14
Wind Turbines Are Tornado Proof?
I have a lot of love for the wind turbine and always have. Driving around the southern coast of Victoria, here in Australia, you’ll come across wind turbines spinning majestically within view of the crashing waves that make up our beautiful coastline. The winds are constant, and at times genuinely terrifying, but nowhere near as terrifying as the tornado that ripped through Canadian County in Oklahoma.
A tornado that did little or no damage to two wind turbines located at the Canadian Valley Technology Center (CVTC).
The tornado, as seen in the image above, was massive: it has since been listed as the widest tornado ever measured on Earth, and was home to winds nearing 300 miles per hour. 18 lives were lost as the tornado touched down and tore through El Reno, and no doubt the financial cost is going to skyrocket.
In the wake of the tornado many reports depicted a wind turbine blade detaching from a turbine and demolishing the CVTC child care facility. While the CVTC buildings were severely hit, the two turbines were not the cause of the problem. According to CVTC, the blade that did the damage was a learning tool, bound by steel straps to a block of concrete.
Bill Hulsey, El Reno Campus Business and Industry Services Director, said the internet stories about the turbine “flying off a tower and into the daycare center” or destroying it are unfortunate and baseless.
The fifteen people who were on campus at the time of the tornado took refuge in the basement of another building, which meant that despite the carnage, CVTC did not suffer any human loss.