7 Apr 2010

Sth Canterbury farmers vow to obstruct line workers

3:10 pm on 7 April 2010

Some farmers in South Canterbury say they will do all they can to obstruct upgrade work on power pylons on their land.

They contend they are not being treated fairly by national grid operator Transpower, which is upgrading the line that supplies much of the power to Christchurch.

Transpower has said it needs to finish strengthening pylon bases on farm land between the Waitaki and Rangitata rivers before the winter sets in.

The farmers want rental payments in return for access to their property and say they should be treated the same as landowners who are paid for new lines.

A group representing farmers from mid-Canterbury to Otago met on Tuesday night and resolved to use whatever resources are available to obstruct the upgrade.

They say Transpower has taken an antagonistic approach by attempting to bulldoze onto properties before negotiating with landowners.