Sandisfield residents upset over backyard pipeline

SANDISFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The normally quiet Otis State Forest is now the center of construction and controversy.

Those who oppose the pipeline say Kinder Morgan is violating article 97 of the state constitution. Kinder Morgan says they’ve received all the required approvals.

The quiet of the Otis State Forest in Sandisfield has been replaced by wood chipping on Wednesday. Cut down trees were sent to sawdust.

Kinder Morgan is laying nearly 4 miles of new natural gas pipeline.

“I’ve had many sleepless nights over this pipeline,” said one Sandisfield resident.

24 people have been arrested for trespassing during protests. But while construction continues, life in this small town is anything but normal.

Police: 6 protesters arrested at Sandisfield gas pipeline project

“There are only 800 people in the town. We don’t have a lot of political clout and the motto of this town is where the hell is Sandisfield and you will see that on bumper stickers so basically we are in a disadvantaged position,” said Sandisfield resident Ron Bernard.

A large police presence surrounds this historic home where their backyard is just 270 feet from the pipeline.

“How would you like to have a pipeline within 270 feet of your home? The incineration zone for a pipeline is 1,000 feet so God forbid there were a breach or explosion, this house would be toast,” said Jean Atwater-Williams, a Sandisfield homeowner.

On Thursday, those arrested protesters will plead not guilty in court to trespassing and disorderly conduct charges.

Related: 18 arrested during pipeline protest in Berkshire County