Misconception - Wind turbines are unsafe. The blades can fly off, or the turbine could collapse.
Wind energy is statistically one of the safest energy technologies and enjoys an outstanding health & safety record. There is over 40 years of operating experience and more than 190,000 machines are installed around the world. In all that time, no member of the public has ever been injured during the operation of a wind farm (AusWEA)
A Summary of Fatal Accidents in Wind Energy by Paul Gipe details the worldwide accidents in wind energy. Source:
Updated in 2012 from Wind Power: Renewable Energy for Home, Farm and Business (2004)
- Over the course of past 40 years there have been 59 fatal accidents in wind energy worldwide. Most of these occurred during transport and construction.
- Falling from the tower is the single most apparent occupational hazard of working with wind energy.
- Most accidents are due to the same common sense fatal mistake, where people did not use any form of fall protection.
As AusWEA states, “all of these deaths could have been prevented if today’s work practices had been adopted”.
Odds of Death Due to Injury, United States, 2013.
- The odds of anyone being killed in a wind turbine related accident in the U.S. over his/her lifetime was 1 in 3,777,272. This compares to a 1 in 84 risk of dying in a motor vehicle accident, a 1 in 1,134 risk of drowning, and a 1 in 56,789 risk of dying from a hornet, wasp or bee sting.
As for blades flying off and tower collapse, modern wind turbines & their components undergo certification from International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC), Institute of Electrical & Electronics Engineers (IEEE), International Energy Agency and International Standards Organization (ISO) to minimise the risk of this ever occurring.
At any point in time a wind turbine computes 200 types of data sets, readings on blade imbalance, anemometer readings and other factors and shuts down if an anomaly is detected.
In addition, wind turbines undergo planned maintenance, which includes regular inspections, so that they are operating properly and continue to be a safe workplace.
RATCH-Australia has in place an ISO compliant Integrated Management System which includes the implementation of safety and environmental controls which will guide and monitor our workers and site visitors.