The wind turbine industry provides one of the most critical jobs to date as it promotes a clean source of power. Wind turbines are increasing by the year, and it isn’t showing any signs of slowing down, especially with the demand for more sustainable energy production.
The rapid expansion of the industry results in the employment of thousands of industrial workers that are responsible for installing and maintaining the iconic electricity generators. Along its growth comes the rising need to take a closer look at wind turbine safety, which is crucial in such a high-risk job.
With that in mind, understanding the different risk factors of being wind turbine technicians can make a world of difference in your company’s training and safety measures.
Hazard #1: Falling
Seeing as wind turbine technicians constantly work at height, it’s no surprise how falling is one of the leading hazards in the wind turbine industry. It is a severe risk that workers go through every day in spite of the well-evaluated safety devices and personal protection equipment in place.
One misstep can lead to a fatal disaster, especially during the installation process, where workers need to climb to secure all the parts in place carefully. Not to mention, falling even with proper harnesses can still cause injuries as the whiplash from the equipment can lead to broken bones or head injuries.
Hazard #2: Confined Spaces
Employees that need to conduct maintenance checks on the wind turbines can run into potential hazards, such as narrow spaces in the current work environment. These include the following:
- Tower – Believe it or not, the tall, vertical tower can be dangerous as the cramped workspace inside the area can trap workers during their installation process.
- Nacelle – Workers have to regularly conduct troubleshoot issues in the nacelle, which is the part of the turbine that contains its electrical components. Even a minor error can lead to the person’s electrocution, followed by the risk of turning into a fire hazard.
- Hub – The hub is attached to the nacelle, which means that it is a high-risk zone where employees can also become trapped.
The tight workspace can make it challenging for employees as it is a continuous risk, be it during the initial installation of the wind turbine or doing regular check-ups. Don’t let the large machinery fool you as the confined spaces mentioned above can lead to significant consequences.
Hazard #3: Electrocution
Wind turbines are designed to produce clean energy, so it’s only natural that electrocution poses a major threat to employees. The best way to ensure safety for everyone is to double-check whether the electrical generation is paused while workers are tinkering with the electrical equipment. Again, failing to follow the necessary safety measures can lead to sparks, which will result in electrocution and fires.
The Bottom Line
The wind turbine industry is rapidly growing, and while there are various safety rules and precautions established, every employee must undergo proper training to reinforce their knowledge on the correct safety procedures.
If you’re looking for GWO health and safety courses in Scotland, get in touch with us to see how we can help.