Protesters Illegally Shut Down Drilling Rig in Central PA

breaking the lawProtesters have illegally shut down an EQT drilling rig in Moshannon State Forest in central Pennsylvania. The rig was in the process of being commissioned (just getting started) and protesters blocked the road trucks were using to access the rig.

In addition to blocking the road, two protesters sat 75 feet up on a tree platform connected to a cable stretched across the road. If a truck cut through or snagged the cable, it would cause the demented protesters to fall out of the tree platform. That’s how sick these people are.

[EQT Corp. spokeswoman Natalie] Cox said the Pittsburgh-based company’s primary concern was the well-being of its employees and contractors.

“The safety of everyone involved is our primary concern, including employees, contractors, police officers and the protesters themselves,” Cox said. “Therefore, operations will not resume until we are assured it is safe to do so.”

Gloria Forouzan of Marcellus Protest said 150 demonstrators had blocked an access road for trucks headed to the EQT rig.

State police are at the site monitoring the situation. No arrests have been made.

Another protester, 25-year-old Alex Lotorto of Pike County, said two activists were sitting 75 feet in the air on a tree platform that had been connected to a cable stretched across the access road. If a truck or machine were to cross the cable and cut through it, the tree sitters would fall, Lotorto said.*

The protesters are threatening to stay until the drilling rig is removed.

*Stroudsburg (PA) Pocono Record/AP (Jul 9, 2012) – Protesters lead to temporary shutdown of Pa. oil rig