Safety concerns over huge turbines for Hartlepool after accident in Germany

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SAFETY concerns have been raised over three proposed huge wind turbines for Hartlepool after a blade broke off the same model type in Germany.

Plans have been lodged with planners at Hartlepool Borough Council for the single turbines, with a ground-to-tip height of 677ft making them the tallest in all of England and Wales.

The intended locations for them are land at Graythorpe Industrial Estate, adjacent to TATA Steel off Brenda Road and Tofts Road West, all in Hartlepool.

But fresh fears have been raised by Seaton Carew independent councillor Paul Thompson.

It comes after it emerged that monitoring devices had to be installed in turbines of the same make after a blade snapped off one at a wind farm in south-west Germany last December.

It was the same E126 model that is proposed in Hartlepool.

Coun Thompson said: “If one of the blades was to come off here we are talking major, major problems.

“It’s just not a good idea.

“These sort of turbines are designed for offshore and American plains, they are not designed to be put to land.”

The E126 turbines are made by the German manufacturer Enercon.

The fault of the blade break in Germany is said to be unknown.

The agent for the proposals for the turbines in Hartlepool are he energy Workshop based in Huddersfield.

A spokesman for the company said: “We cannot comment about individual wind turbine projects.

“If successful, the final turbine selection for the Hartlepool projects will be subject to a tender process with a number of different manufacturers.

“These are major infrastructure projects, no turbines will be selected without satisfying very high standards of performance, safety and reliability, and with the agreement with the local planning authority.”

Seaton Carew UKIP councillor Tom Hind said he was hoping to gain cross party support from the council opposing the turbine proposals.

He said: “These type of units are higher than Big Ben and New York’s Statue of Liberty.

“They have no place in Hartlepool whatsoever.”