'Reckless' anti-fracking campaigners scaled 60ft high rig at Kirby Misperton

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THREE protesters have scaled a 60ft high work over-rig at the Kirby Misperton fracking site and are refusing to come down.

They got on to the site on Habton Road in the early hours today (Sat Oct 21) and scaled the work-over rig.

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Campaign group KM Protectors said the three have supplies and plan to remain on the rig for as long as possible.

A spokesman for site operators Third Energy, said: "The intruders have climbed up the workover rig, currently mobilised to the KM8 well, and are occupying the platform known as the monkey board.

"The company strongly condemns this reckless action that potentially has serious health and safety consequences for both the intruders and the people working on the site. In particular, the intruders have been advised by police loud hailer of the serious risk created by open flames and sparks on a live gas site."

A North Yorkshire Police spokesman, said: "Police were called at around 3am today (Saturday Oct 21) by site security at Kirby Misperton, to a report that three protestors had gained access to the hydraulic fracturing site.

"Two men and a woman climbed onto a platform 60ft up a rig inside the site and have remained there since.

Superintendent Michael Walker, of North Yorkshire Police, said: “Once again, emergency services resources will have to be deployed to deal with this situation.

“We have endeavoured to work with people on all sides of the issue, and our approach has been to ask them to work with us to make this a safe and peaceful protest.

“However, when it turns from peaceful protest to deliberate acts that are unlawful, cause unreasonable disruption to others or are dangerous then we need to take action.

“Our immediate concern is the safety and welfare of the protesters. Officers are on site assessing the situation.

“If the safety of those on the rig is put at risk then we will take appropriate action to bring the protest to safe conclusion.”

The campaign group said in a statement: “We took this action because we feel compelled to make a strong and visible stand against this industry which threatens so much for all of us and future generations; drinkable water, clean air and the very stability of the land beneath our feet are in danger. Fracking only benefits a few at the expense of the many. We want to inspire others and demonstrate the power we have when we take a stand. “

Four people were charged yesterday after arrests were made during a protest outside the Kirby Misperton fracking site .

Two men, aged 29 and 72, and two women, aged 31 and 65, were arrested after being cut out of devices in Habton Road.

. They will appear in court next month after being charged with obstructing the highway.

In September and October so far, 48 people have been arrested in connection with protest activity at Kirby Misperton.

Of those arrests, 36 have been charged, four have been cautioned, four face no further action, and four have been released under investigation while enquiries continue.

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