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Officials want answers in Co-op City wind turbine crash

Posted: Updated:

The Co-op City community is dealing with the destruction left by a wind turbine that came crashing down Monday.

The turbine was installed just a few weeks ago, and it was supposed to convert the wind's kinetic energy into electricity, but instead some of it came crashing down.

The area appears to have been secured, but the Department of Buildings and local elected officials are now looking for answers.

The top piece of the wind turbine landed on top of a car around 1:20 p.m., and the deputy assistant fire chief says high winds caused it to lose stability and break off. It hit a digital billboard underneath and caused major damage at a busy intersection.

MORE: Massive Co-op City wind turbine collapses

At least two cars were crushed, but some are saying it's a miracle no one was hurt.

The video taken from a resident nearby captured right when the top piece snapped off and hit the ground.

"I started recording it and next thing you know, it just got faster and faster and faster. The rest of the fiberglass blade blew apart and the steeple that they were on just toppled down and I heard a little crash. The windows were closed, and I was still able to hear the part come down," says witness Basil Rodriguez.

The DOB is now demanding the property owner to act right away, issuing two Class 1 violations, including failure to maintain both the monopole structure and the electronic billboard.

Businesses in the area were also forced to evacuate. The owner is now required to have the electronic billboard removed from the property by a professional engineer.

State Sen. Jamaal Bailey says he is not opposed to the turbine bringing clean energy to the area but claims the neighborhood was not consulted enough about installing the towering structures.

Councilman Andy King tells News 12 that his office was in the process of drafting a text amendment that would prevent structures of that size from being built in the area. He says the city was aware and still allowed the turbine to be installed anyway.

 

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