According to Øyfjellet Wind, the technical issue arose in wind turbine number 18 in early June 2023, initiating a diligent technical assessment and repair process. In a statement, Øyfjellet Wind commented, “This, along with other special circumstances surrounding the damage and repair work, has led to an unusual risk that the rotor falling could fall off the turbine.”
On January 27, the anticipated rotor detachment occurred, but Øyfjellet Wind assured, “Risk analyses had shown that this could happen, the area had been cordoned off, and there was no danger to health or safety.” The company emphasized the isolated nature of the incident, stating, “No other turbines are affected and will continue to operate normally.”
Nordex provided insights into the incident, stating, “During a component exchange in June 2023, the works were postponed for safety reasons due to high wind. Following an evaluation by Nordex Group experts, it was decided that a special tool would need to be developed to bring the rotor back to position as this was the only feasible solution from a technical and safety perspective.”
Nordex acknowledged the unfortunate outcome, explaining, “The rotor unfortunately fell to the ground due to high wind before the special tooling could be installed.” The company added that the turbine, part of the Øyfjellet Wind Park comprising 72 N149/5.X wind turbines, is expected to be back in normal operation during the autumn of 2024.
In response to the incident, Øyfjellet Wind announced plans to conduct a root cause analysis in collaboration with Nordex, addressing both the damage in June and the subsequent rotor detachment. Nordex affirmed that once the proper disposal of debris and operating materials is completed, and a full survey of the remaining tower is undertaken, a replacement rotor can be installed.
Both Øyfjellet Wind and Nordex reassured stakeholders, with Nordex concluding, “This was an isolated incident, and there is no risk to any other of the turbines on the Øyfjellet windfarm or in the wider fleet.”