Vestas onshore turbine ‘engulfed in flames’ in US

US developer MidAmerican is investigating the cause of a Vestas V110-2.0 turbine that caught fire on Monday (24/10) morning and set light to a surrounding field at the 252.5 MW Diamond Trail onshore wind farm in Iowa.

The fire department described turbine fires as "unique and challenging" to put out (Pic credit: Williamsburg Fire Department)

According to a social media post from the Williamsburg fire department, the nacelle of one wind turbine was “fully engulfed in flames” when fire fighters arrived on the scene at 12:56am.

Fallen debris had also caused a field fire, which was extinguished once the department had secured the area.

Commenting on the incident, the fire department said: “This type of fire is unique and challenging, as there are many factors to consider including falling debris on fire and the turbine blades and unit falling apart overhead.”

No injuries to firefighters or civilians were reported.

MidAmerican, the owner of Diamond Trail, said other turbines at the wind farm had been taken offline as a precaution.

A spokesperson said: “Safety is our highest priority, and we are working with the turbine manufacturer, Vestas-American Wind Technology, to determine what occurred. As a precaution, we have taken several other turbines offline in the immediate area and will conduct additional inspections, as necessary.”

The company stressed that such an incident is an “extremely rare occurrence” and “only one other fire of this magnitude [has occurred] in the nearly 20 years since we began operating our first wind farm.”

Diamond Trail comprises 77 turbines. 52 turbines were supplied by Vestas – including eight of the V110-2.0 model – and the remaining 25 by GE.