Freedom Convoy: Viral video shows Coutts border crossing blocked by angry truckers
Both the north and southbound lanes at the crossing on Highway 4 were blocked, according to a tweet by the Alberta Royal Canadian Mounted Police
A new video showing the aerial view at the Coutts border crossing in southern Alberta, Canada, has gone viral as protesters blocked traffic from passing through the border crossing.
A late tweet by the Alberta Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) on Monday, February 7, revealed that both the north and southbound lanes at the crossing on Highway 4 were blocked by demonstrators protesting against Covid-19 mandates. The tweet urged motorists to avoid the area. Trucks and other vehicles began jamming the highway near Coutts last month to support nationwide protests against Covid-19 vaccine mandates for cross-border truck drivers and other broader public health measures.
The CBC reported how one blockade became two in a couple of days as travelers and truckers remained stranded for days. Pro-vaccine advocates have highlighted how the impasse had compromised millions of dollars in trade and blocked access to basic goods and services for residents in the area.
Alberta RCMP report that both north and southbound lanes at the Coutts border have now been blocked by the unlawful blockade on Hwy 4. Motorists are still being asked to avoid the area.— RCMP Alberta (@RCMPAlberta) February 8, 2022
Protesters and federal officials had reached an agreement on Wednesday to open a lane on each side of the highway at the crossing, where there's been a blockade since Saturday. However, no stream of vehicles has been moving across the border for a while.
The moment farmers decided to shut the highway down, lanes were open but now both directions have been blocked off.— Syd Fizzard (@SydFizzard) February 8, 2022
Help the blockaders legal defence at https://t.co/FgSvcLwSPy pic.twitter.com/Oyx7EqKj6x
The second blockade that took place about 11 miles north of Coutts briefly disrupted traffic. There was a large presence of semi-trailers, heavy equipment, and trucks blocking access Thursday morning. The vehicles flew Canadian flags and signs that declared "We Want Freedom" as they moved up and down the highway north of the blockade with horns blaring.
Windsor, the Ambassador Bridge closed due to the protest of the truckers. After Coutts, another strategic US - Canada border crossing is blocked. pic.twitter.com/9wbjirVWqv— RadioGenova (@RadioGenova) February 8, 2022
Scenes from the blockade at the Alberta-Montana border where police are now telling protesters to leave. Truckers and others have been blocking the Coutts border crossing since Saturday as part of the "Freedom Convoy" against pubic health restrictions. More from @CTVCalgary pic.twitter.com/gCAP09fVr1— Dawn Walton (@CTVdawnwalton) February 1, 2022
Despite the logistics nightmare caused by the blockade, a video showing the aerial view of the ongoing protests was lauded on social media.
"Good!! Keep them blocked until they end all mandates!! THANK YOU!!" one tweet said. "If you think the truck convoys have overwhelming support already, wait and see what happens if the RCMP arrests those truckers at the Coutts crossing," another remarked.
"What a BEAUTIFUL sight! Truckers, Farmers, & now hundreds of Cowboys on horseback join Freedom Convoy protesters at Coutts Crossing in Alberta!" someone else added. AmericaIsWithYouCanada I wish I were there!" A Twitter user chimed in, "No doubt inspired by the success of the blockade at the Coutts-Sweetgrass border crossing, which is now entering its 11th day."
Good!! Keep them blocked until they end all mandates!! THANK YOU!! North and southbound traffic now blocked at Coutts border crossing, says RCMP tweet | CBC News https://t.co/ahhx7f1oJL— Lando Griffin 13.0 🇨🇦🍊HONK! HONK! (@EvilMon94766349) February 8, 2022
If you think the truck convoys have overwhelming support already, wait and see what happens if the RCMP arrest those truckers at the Coutts crossing.— Joe Blo (@NormalGuy223) February 1, 2022
What a BEAUTIFUL sight! Truckers, Farmers, & now hundreds of Cowboys on horseback join Freedom Convoy protesters at Coutts Crossing in Alberta! AmericaIsWithYouCanada I wish I were there! @AppSame pic.twitter.com/AFpCcDjt8S— wendy lou (@WLouT2) February 7, 2022
No doubt inspired by the success of the blockade at the Coutts-Sweetgrass border crossing, which is now entering its 11th day. https://t.co/t3rvRo3ugE— Dave Cournoyer (@davecournoyer) February 8, 2022
Demonstrators began parking their vehicles near the Coutts crossing on Saturday, February 5, following similar events in Ottawa and across the nation to protest vaccine mandates and other stringent public health guidelines. Several United Conservative Party MLAs expressed their support for lifting Covid restrictions earlier in the week, including the restrictions exemption program (REP) which was introduced last year. REP required anyone wanting to enter specific events or establishments to show they are fully vaccinated or proof of a negative test.
Cowboys arriving at Alberta/Coutts Montana border crossing in support of truckers pic.twitter.com/2k7Wu1xrjD— Sacred7Healing (@KarenHa97783644) February 7, 2022
"The efficacy of the REP program, in light of Omicron and its transmissibility, has long past its purpose," Michaela Frey, UCP MLA for Brooks-Medicine Hat, wrote on Facebook. "I have advocated for a swift end, within days, to end the REP, proof of vaccination, program." Meanwhile, Jason Nixon, an MLA who serves as the UCP's minister of environment and parks, said in a statement that although he is not a doctor, "it is clear now that mandates like the [REP] are not as effective against the current Covid-19 situation as much as health officials expected." He added, "You'll note the premier said [vaccine mandates will] be gone imminently, and I'll hold him to it."