Towards analysing risks to public safety from wind turbines

Sander R. Brouwer, Saad H.S. Al-Jibouri, Ibsen Chivatá Cárdenas, Johannes I.M. Halman* (Corresponding Author)

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

    19 Citations (Scopus)
    507 Downloads (Pure)


    Wind energy has become an increasingly desirable and viable renewable energy source in recent years. However, wind energy faces a number of challenges, one of them being risks to public safety from wind turbine failures. This paper provides an analysis as a first step towards integrating wind turbine failures with public safety risks. In this paper, an existing Fault Tree Analysis (FTA) of wind turbines is expanded to include wind turbine failures that could be linked to public safety risks. The paper combines knowledge from literature related to wind turbine failures with expert judgements. Quantification of component failures and failure modes in the expanded FTA is carried out, and wind turbine failure modes related to the assessment of risks to public safety from wind turbines are analysed. The failures modes used in the Dutch system for assessing public safety risks from wind turbines are compared with the outcomes of this study and improvements to this assessment procedure are proposed. The paper concludes that the information available about wind turbine failures is still limited and there is a lack of detailed descriptions of incidents in the recorded data.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)77-87
    Number of pages11
    JournalReliability Engineering and System Safety
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2018


    • Incident registration
    • Public safety
    • Safety risks
    • Wind energy
    • Wind turbines


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