Victorian Police Perplexed: Furious Neighbours Continue to Shoot-Up Noisy Wind Turbines

The photo above was cooked up a couple of years ago by wind industry stooge, Andrew Bray. The stories below, though, are real enough.

‘Could result in death’: shots fired at Waubra wind turbines
The Courier
Derrick Krusche
27 Sep 2017

Police suspect a long-arm gun such as a rifle was used to shoot turbines at the Waubra Wind Farm northwest of Ballarat recently.

Detectives have launched an investigation after technicians found bullet holes on several of the big structures, which are located on private farms.

The offence could have occurred at any time from late last year before the damage was discovered by renewable energy company Acciona.

There have been six similar incidents since the wind farm opened in 2010.

Detective Senior Sergeant David Hermit said Acciona employees were at risk as they were regularly inside the turbines performing maintenance.

“This kind of reckless behaviour could result in the serious injury or death of an employee,” he said

Wind turbines have often sparked controversy over their appearance and also over health concerns.

But Detective Senior Sergeant Hermit could not say what the motivation was.

Police have previously interviewed people of interest but no charges have been laid.

They were looking into whether the gun was fired from a paddock or along a road.

“It’s probably some form of long-arm, just because of the distance involved,” Detective Senior Sergeant Hermit said.

Acciona turbine technician Frank Cartledge said: “To find these bullet holes and the damage they’ve done, it’s pretty scary.”
The Courier

Here’s another take on the story.

Someone keeps shooting at a well-known Victorian wind farm
Business Insider Australia
Simon Thomson
27 September 2017

One of Victoria’s best-known wind farms, Waubra, 35km north-west of Ballarat, has been shot at several times in recent years, police have revealed.

The details have emerged as detectives from the Ballarat crime unit investigate the latest report of numerous shots being fired into one of the turbines.

Waubra is Australia’s fourth largest wind farm, with 128 turbines capable of generating a combined 192 megawatts of power – around an eighth of the now-closed Hazelwood coal-fired power station.

But the site has attracted the ire of opponents of wind farms, who claim they damage the health of people living nearby. The Waubra Foundation is an advocacy group set up at the time the wind farm opened and campaigns against the developments claiming they cause a range of health problems.

Police say they’re unsure when the latest damage to a turbine occurred – it could have been as far back as late last year – but say six similar incidents have been reported them since 2010.

Detective senior sergeant David Hermit said these incidents are incredibly dangerous to employees who regularly work inside the turbines performing maintenance.

“This kind of reckless behaviour could result in the serious injury or death of an employee who is inside one of the turbines,” he said.

“It may not always be apparent that someone’s working inside the wind turbines. If you are shooting at these wind turbines there is a high chance you could hit an employee.”

Police believe someone in the local community knows who is responsible and is appealing for people to contact Crime Stoppers with information.
Business Insider Australia

Simon Thomson represents the kind of gormless twit that passes for a journalist in Australia.

In 2017 – after the disaster that’s played out in wind ‘powered’ South Australia, it beggars belief that a sentient being could write that Waubra has:

“128 turbines capable of generating a combined 192 megawatts of power – around an eighth of the now-closed Hazelwood coal-fired power station.”

Simon prefaces that nonsense with the word ‘capable’, but he clearly intends to give his readers the utterly misleading impression that Waubra’s 128 whirling wonders are a head-to-head match with a conventional generation system, like the now-defunct Hazelwood coal-fired plant. Otherwise, why make the comparison?

If Waubra really was delivering 192 MW around the clock (like coal-fired plant do every day of the year), it would show up in the data – but, for some strange reason, it doesn’t. [Note to Simon, when you’re planning your next kite flying holiday, don’t plan it too far ahead – the weather may fail to deliver the fun and games you hoped for.]

What appears above and below is taken from the Aneroid Energy website and captures the entire output of every wind turbine connected to Australia’s Eastern Grid during June this year.

That output includes every single spark generated by Acciona’s Waubra operation.

And yet, on something like 13 occasions during the month of June, the total output from all turbines hooked up to the entire Grid was less than 200 MW (or less than 4% of total capacity); on at least 6 occasions, less than 100 MW (or 2% of capacity); and, on more than one occasion, closer to 20 MW.

Drilling down on the actual output from Waubra during June shows that comparing its ‘performance’ with a coal-fired power plant is simply risible:

Taking pot shots at wind turbines is a phenomena not limited to Australia or Western Victoria:

Angry Wind Farm Victims Pull the Trigger: Turbines Shot-Up in Montana and Victoria

Angry Neighbours Shoot-Up Wind Turbines; as Hosts Hit With $Millions in Developers’ Debts

Wind Industry Goons Beating Up On Women, as Furious Community Defenders Shoot Up Turbines (Again)

There are any number of reasons why someone would get angry enough to start plugging away at these things.

To the obvious – such as, being driven insane by incessant turbine generated low-frequency noise and infrasound that prevents neighbours from enjoying a comfortable night’s sleep, in their very own home – can be added the frustration that comes from journalists so dense that they remain bemused by the fury and hostility that having a couple of hundred of these things speared into your backyard inevitably generates.

To have wet-behind-the-ears reporters peddling hackneyed wind industry propaganda, such as “this wind farm powers 100,000 homes and sucks a million tons of CO2 from the atmosphere”, or – citing a former tobacco advertising guru – trotting out nonsense such as “wind farm health concerns have been dismissed by experts”, merely adds insult to injury.

That kind of rubbish is put forward as justifying the kind of suffering that Acciona has dished out at Waubra to people like Carl and Samantha Stepnell, Andrew and Maggie Reid, Noel and Janine Dean, Robyn and Glenn Brew, Berni Janssen, Enid Thomas and Donald Thomas. For what they have had to put up with, see our post here.

Their tragic and unnecessary suffering is a matter of public record, having been presented to the Federal Senate on a number of occasions.

What these lazy hacks will not disclose is the fact that, since July 2009 when its turbines started operating, Acciona has quietly purchased 8 of the 11 homes surrounding Waubra that their owners abandoned; homes which were rendered uninhabitable by the low-frequency noise generated by its turbines.

To keep a lid on its liability, and to prevent any unhelpful PR issues, Acciona forced the unwilling vendors to all sign bullet-proof “gag” clauses – that prevent them from ever talking about the “sale” (see our post here). Trish Godfrey is just one tragic example (see this article and our posts here and here).

Nor will these intellectual pygmies pursue Acciona’s pet acoustic consultants, MDA, for presenting fraudulent acoustic reports which it uses to claim ‘compliance’ with the noise conditions of its planning consent. Notwithstanding that its wind farm has never complied with those conditions.

In the ordinary course of human affairs, when someone’s suffering becomes another’s opportunity for ridicule, or simply gets dismissed by those in a position to do something about it (which includes so-called ‘journalists’, like Derrick Krusche and Simon Thomson), anger and frustration follow like night follows day.

That a disgruntled neighbour, treated with practiced contempt by a wind farm developer, abandoned by the authorities paid handsomely to protect their right to live in and enjoy their home, and continually mocked by two-bit journalists, might ‘tool-up’ and start pumping hot lead into his tormentors should come as no surprise. While that kind of corporate and institutional malevolence against wind farm neighbours prevails, the likes of Acciona can expect its neighbours to respond in kind.

This isn’t the first time neighbours have shot up wind turbines, and it won’t be the last.

11 thoughts on “Victorian Police Perplexed: Furious Neighbours Continue to Shoot-Up Noisy Wind Turbines

  1. I am sure it is better than people shooting themselves, as NOBODY cares to measure the excessive sounds coming from these turbines that remain unmeasured. People’s right to know the experienced sound pressure levels is a human right. The civil disobedience by Acciona and other wind farm developers, to claim compliance on a nod and a wink by planning ministers is also another breach of human rights.

    Police say it is NOT their job to investigate and enforce the law when the likes of Mr Andrew Thomson mislead the National Wind farm commissioner by claiming that the sound pressure testing was not required to be done at our property after the planning minister requested testing to be done.

    Acciona’s Managing director had then told the NWFC that the representative property used was compliant. The representative property specified by Acciona MD does not exist, the correct property was said to be in breach of permit conditions 14,15,16 and 17 of the permit. ACCIONA was advised in a letter from the planning minister Mr Matthew Guy dated 15/9/2011 of this problem, and was requested that testing at a number of properties be done our property was included being at 377 stud farm road.

    In a letter from the internet dated August 2012 from Acciona,s Generation manager and a former government employee to a high ranking planning person requesting that the draft testing plan requested by the planning department by delayed so as the requirement to avoid testing being done. This request was successful.

    After a delay of 18 months Mr Guy planning minster accepted a plan by ACCIONA to do the testing of SACs. Needless to say the testing was done without the turbines operating and no results available. That is Cruel Conduct and the police are concerned about turbines being used as targets when there are thousands of bullet holes in road signs really?

    Test the sound pressure levels people are complaining about for goodness sake, I say. All else is used as a diversion.

    Noel Dean

  2. I think a few well placed hunting rounds might seriously damage these monstrosities. There should be a bounty.

  3. What’s worth more to the environment a bullet in a turbine or a bird in a blade? What is worth more to human health a bullet in a turbine or a life destroyed by the noise a turbine makes?

  4. ANGRY …… that a column such as this even needs to happen because the trusted neighbors, politicians, health agencies, enforcement agencies have not thought about the ramifications of their various self-serving decisions and that those negatively impacted cannot look to those very same decision-makers/problem-solvers for resolution of the negative impact they created or supported. Much to think about here, is there not?

  5. A new fridge started making intermittent noises, with an eventual replacement doing the same.
    My hair started falling out as well as a whole lot of other things related to nervous exhaustion. At any time of the night I’d nearly hit the ceiling to noise like a double-barrel shotgun. Proving the noise of the first fridge was pure luck as the 2nd electrician sent had his head inside it while talking to the company manager on mobile phone when one of its noises started.
    Another sound was like a jet engine winding up but not quite getting to speed; the anticipation became horrendous.
    So I thoroughly sympathise with anyone living near a wind turbine from my experience of spinning fridge motors & compressed gas pipes.

    The trouble with propellors is they have to be balanced, even at low RPM the load shift can cause all kinds of problems.
    It would be interesting to know what the industry considers to be acceptable +/- kilo weight of blades.
    Just like buying a car motor hand-built on the wrong day can turn out to be very expensive, all industries get the same problem.

  6. I am a little puzzled that the recent, highly technical paper from the Max Planck Institute on infrasound damage has not gotten more publicity.
    If lawyers utilized the objectively observed damage in actual or threatened lawsuits, insurance companies would be inclined to withdraw needed backing to these wind projects.

  7. You can add Cape Bridgewater wind farm to the list. In that instance they were hoons in a ute hanging out the window shooting through the wind farm. At one point they actually parked directly under a turbine firing shots across the site in broad daylight. They did not seem to care if they were seen. Despite this, it was not possible to identify them though.

    The host put up ‘no shooting’ signs on the fence. A few days later, the signs were gone! They had been stolen.

    What are the wind companies going to do if it gets to the point where no employee is willing to go up a tower to service a turbine for fear of being shot at?

    On the other matter of Acciona purchasing properties, they admit it in the footage below. I have posted it before, but it backs up what STT are stating in the article above.

    Also noticed extra long turbine blades arriving in Portland the other day. Possibly for Acciona Mount Gellibrand project. Not sure. But they are long. I feel for whoever is going to have to live next to those monsters. They should be for offshore projects. Not onshore. What is happening with State Planning in Victoria?

  8. If I lived within earshot of these buggers, I’d probably shoot them up too! Fortunately though, I’m far enough away, and only view these things from a distance! Mind you, shooting is a very ineffective way of venting your frustration! Has anyone tried a stick or two of Geli? 😉

  9. I am gobsmacked more of it isnt happening,, although l was thinking of flying the drone in to drop a nasty acid compound over their control gear..,

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