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A New Market in the Wind
Posted by Ted Sheppard on June 3, 2010 at 8:37 AM.

Wind turbines offer a good opportunity for steel producers and plate rolling companies to increase their business.  Erectors, too, will be busy.  In order to be prepared for the growth in this alternative energy resource, IMPACT (Ironworkers Management Action Cooperative Trust) has signed an agreement with the Francis Tuttle Technology Center (FTTC) in Oklahoma City.  Wind farm developers are looking for workers with certified training in particular areas: Safety and Torque/Tension skills.  The FTTC training covers tower safety/rescue and torque/tension certification.


FTTC is a member of the Wind Energy Training Consortium which is a group of training institutions recognized by the American Wind Energy Association. The course is given in an accelerated manner over a span of 36 hours. In order for an ironworker to be eligible for this training, he or she must have a minimum of three years field experience and have had the OSHA 10, Subpart R, and First Aid/CPR/AED training.


One example of the growing demand for this specialized training is the Cape Wind Project. This offshore wind farm has been given the green light by the Department of Interior and is expected to ultimately provide as much as three-quarters of Cape Cod’s electrical energy. This will be a major wind energy project. There is a proposal to put five trial wind turbines just beyond the lake water intake structure in Lake Erie, offshore of Cleveland. This concept is really starting to move forward and everyone should be ready for it.


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