Although a Bakken-area wind boom may never reach the magnitude of the previous
boom in oil shale, there are now hundreds of wind turbines in western
North Dakota, with hundreds of more on the way. According to
Bakken Today, a member of the North Dakota Public Service Commission says that the
state's wind capacity is the best in the United States.
Major Wind Projects Underway
In late June, the PSC approved the Brady Wind 1 project, a $250 million
project whose output will be purchased by the Basin Electric Power Cooperative.
Contractors expect to complete the 87-turbine project by late 2016.
More Wind Farms Increase Accident Potential
With the increased construction and long-term maintenance needs of wind
turbines, work accidents are a concern. One such accident just happened
on July 3, on a wind farm about fives miles southeast of Pratt, Kansas.
According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA),
the 41-year-old worker fell approximately 120 feet when a suspended work
platform unexpectedly dropped. He and another worker were performing maintenance
on the wind turbine when the accident occurred. The man reportedly landed
on his back in the mud. He was able to speak with first responders upon
Allegedly Lacking a Helmet
KWCH News, he was not wearing a helmet. Emergency personnel transported him via
medical helicopter to a Wichita hospital. Three days after the accident,
authorities said the man remained hospitalized.
Companies engaged in the installation and maintenance of wind turbines
are subject to workplace safety requirements administered by OSHA.
When a worker is injured on the job, state
workers comp laws address compensation. If you or a family member is a victim in a
workplace accident, our firm will provide a legal consultation to you
without charge. To learn more about our legal services, please