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Oregon Wind Tower Collapse Kills Worker

by Associated Press
Seattle Post-Intelligencer, August 26, 2007

THE DALLES, Ore. -- A wind turbine tower crashed to the ground at a wind farm east of The Dalles, killing one worker and injuring another, Sherman County authorities said.

Sheriff's Deputy Geremy Shull said the collapse occurred Saturday afternoon. He declined to release the names of the workers, but said the man who died was from Goldendale. The injured worker was in serious condition at a hospital in The Dalles, Shull said.

A third worker was not hurt.

Shull said the cause of the collapse had not been determined. Officials from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration were investigating Sunday.

Portland-based PPM Energy owns the wind farm, but Siemens manufactures and owns the wind turbine tower that collapsed.

Melanie Forbrick, a Siemens spokeswoman based in Orlando, Fla., said the turbine had been in operation for 500 hours and the workers were doing a routine inspection.

She said the worker who died was at the top of the tower when it collapsed. She said the injured man was inside it. The worker who escaped injury was at the base.

"We are very saddened by this event and our deepest sympathies go out to the workers and their families," Forbrick said.

Forbrick said she did not know the height of the turbine. Bonneville Power Administration documents from last year said the turbine towers would stand 263 feet high and reach about 400 feet with blades included.

Associated Press
Oregon Wind Tower Collapse Kills Worker
Seattle Post-Intelligencer, August 26, 2007

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