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SSE beats Fluor in £300m wind farm legal fight

A £300 MILLION claim against a joint venture offshore wind farm owned by Scottish & Southern Energy (SSE) and RWE has been thrown out.

Engineering giant Fluor had submitted the claim over a dispute about foundation parts of some of the turbines operated by Greater Gabbard Offshore Winds (GGOW).

SSE confirmed yesterday a UK arbitration panel had ruled in GGOW's favour, meaning it would not have to pay Fluor.

The case centres on work carried out on 52 of the 140 turbines, with Fluor claiming there was a design change which amounted to a change in specification, meaning it should be paid for the resulting costs.

However, GGOW's owners have maintained the foundations were defective and Fluor should fix them.

A separate claim, launched by GGOW against Fluor, is still being worked on with no resolution expected until next year.

A spokesman for SSE said: "SSE is pleased, but not surprised, that the arbitration panel considering Fluor's £300m claim against GGOW has found GGOW does not need to make any payment to Fluor.

"Following this, SSE expects GGOW will continue to pursue its claim against Fluor regarding the need for assurance as to the structural integrity of the 52 disputed turbines.

"The legal process relating to this claim is expected to continue well into 2013."

Fluor, listed on the New York Stock Exchange, said it was "extremely dis-appointed" with the decision.

All 140 turbines at the wind farm, located 25 kilometres off the coast of Suffolk, are operational and exporting electricity.

GGOW said access restrictions remain in place around the 52 disputed turbines.

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