Thruway Authority Sues Wind Turbine Company Over Failures

Four turbines built along Thruway

Tom Puckett
December 27, 2018 - 4:12 pm

Photo via Save Ontario Shores

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Buffalo, NY (WBEN) The New York State Thruway Authority today announced it has filed a lawsuit against Vergnet,S.A., Prudent Engineering, LLP, Ravi Engineering & L.S., P.C.,  Kandey Company, Inc. and CHA Consulting, Inc./Clough Harbor & Assoc. LLP for the failure of four wind turbines located along the Thruway in Chautauqua and Erie Counties, which have been offline since last year. A Summons with Notice has been filed against the defendants alleging negligence, professional malpractice, breach of warranty and breach of contract.

The wind turbines are located on Authority property at the exit 61 (Ripley - Shortman Road), exit 59 (Dunkirk - Fredonia - NY Route 60), exit 58 (Silver Creek - Irving - NY Routes 5, 20 & 438, and exit 57A (Eden – Angola) and were installed in 2013-2014 as part of a renewable energy initiative. A fifth turbine, located near exit 60 at the Thruway Authority’s Westfield Maintenance Facility, was manufactured by a different company, remains operational and is not involved in this lawsuit.

The authority says four turbines went offline between October 2017 and January 2018 due to various mechanical issues. 

Kandey Company, Inc. was selected through a competitive bidding process to install the turbines, and contracted with Vergnet for their purchase.

CHA Consulting provided preliminary engineering services, final design services, and construction support services to the Authority pertaining to the wind turbines.  Prudent Engineering, LLP provided construction inspection services relating to the installation of the wind turbines and later, as a subconsultant to Ravi Engineering, served as program manager providing management, monitoring and maintenance services for the wind turbines.    

The Thruway Authority is seeking to recover more than $8.1 million plus interest, and costs and collection fees.

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