HIGHMORE, S.D. (ECWd) -
The NTSB released its factual report on a plane crash that occurred on April 27, 2014 near Highmore, South Dakota resulting in the death of 4, including 3 cattlemen and the pilot.
The plane crashed into a 300 foot tall wind turbine that was part of a larger wind farm.
Among the items listed in this report was that the pilot, experienced in flying in the area of the crash, had previously expressed concerns to the FAA Flight Standards District Office about this wind farm (page 2) and that the light on top of the turbine was reported as not functioning (page 7). Finish reading the NTSB's report below (or click here).
Vermilion County - In January of 2014, the Vermilion County Board was asked to fact-find issues with malfunctioning wind turbine lights in the California Ridge farm, and the board quickly dismissed any sense of responsibility and any attempt at levying fines against Invenergy for not following established rules - all while allowing Mike Blazier, attorney for Invenergy, to simply put something in writing - establish it as fact - and never fact check it. (article here)
Excerpts from the Public Comments section of the January Vermilion County Board Meeting:
-Mr. Miles asks the board to look into the November 17th power failure where Invenergy failed to light the turbine towers as required by the county ordinance. He states that that to his knowledge, no NOTAM was filed as required and asks that county assistant state’s attorney Bill Donahue look into the issue. According to Mr. Miles, the county fine for the ordinance violation is $1,000 per turbine or $104,000!
-Next to speak is John Kraft from the Edgar County Watchdogs, Mr. Kraft questioned the Invenergy e-mail to the county that states that during the November lighting failure that procedure was followed. Mr. Kraft did a search of NOTAMS and did not find any that related to the Invenergy complex failure in November. Mr. Kraft requested that the board ask Invenergy for proof that the procedure was followed. He suggests that the proof should be in the form of a letter from the FAA to confirm compliance.