Local News

Deer Island wind turbine spins out of control, prompting emergency response

Officials believe the broken turbine could have been sent freely spinning by strong winds.

The Deer Island Wastewater Treatment Plant. David L. Ryan/Boston Globe

A wind turbine on Deer Island spun out of control Monday, prompting a response from emergency personnel.

The problem was spotted around 10 a.m. by someone walking through the public access area near the Deer Island Wastewater Treatment Plant. The person noticed that the turbine was spinning quickly and had something dangling from one of its blades, the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority said in a statement.

The person called 911. MWRA staff and emergency workers responded to the island.

The turbine has been out of service since April 2022 because of a mechanical issue, the MWRA said. It had been locked in place before Monday.


“Although it’s too soon to speculate on what happened, it appears that this morning’s strong winds broke the braking mechanism and the turbine began to free spin,” the MWRA said in a statement.

A contractor was called to fix the 600-kilowatt turbine, which stands 100 feet tall.

By 3:30 Monday the turbine was successfully stopped and locked back in place. Public access near the turbine remained closed “out of an abundance of caution.”

The plant’s operations were not affected and no damage was done to the facility, the MWRA said.


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