Franklin County landowners allow court-ordered pipeline surveyors

First time surveyors have been on property since judge granted injunction

By Jessica Jewell - Weekend Anchor / Reporter

FRANKLIN COUNTY, Va. - Mountain Valley Pipeline workers started surveying a Franklin County property Wednesday after a judge granted the company an injunction to enter the land last week.

WSLS 10 got an exclusive look as crews accessed the property with the owners' permission for the first time.

Carolyn Reilly is fighting the Mountain Valley Pipeline and is now forced to welcome unwanted visitors.

"We've said no for three years and today is the first day we've had an onslaught of surveyors onto our property," Reilly said.

The Reillys required surveyors to sanitize their shoes before stepping foot on their land.

"It’s to protect, biosecurity for our animals," Reilly said.

Crews then walked about a mile down the Reilly's driveway, passing everything they've tried so desperately to protect.

“I felt very, very vulnerable and exposed. Walking by our family home where our four kids live and where we all live and play and that this is our business, this is our livelihood here," Reilly said.

The Reillys and people who came to support them escorted more than a dozen surveyors around their land, watching and documenting their every move.

"We want to make sure that they do not remove anything, whether it's soil, water… nothing is to be taken from our property. We are in charge here and we're not going to let them feel as though they are," Reilly said.

Crews will be on the Reilly's property for the next two days. Carolyn Reilly said she'll be sending a clear message.

"We believe that we have the right constitutionally to our land and that they should not have the power of eminent domain to take it," Reilly said.

Regardless of what happens next, she says she's not giving up.

"We’ve come this far, three years in... If it's another 30 years, we're here to fight," Reilly said.

WSLS 10 tried to talk to Mountain Valley Pipeline crews on the property, but they refused to comment.

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