Pacific Highway border open, 12 more protesters arrested
Posted February 15, 2022 6:11 am.
Last Updated February 15, 2022 2:20 pm.
Surrey’s Pacific Highway border crossing is once again open and several more people have been arrested after anti-vaccine mandate protesters blocked access for almost three days.
The Canada-U.S. crossing was effectively shut down along 176 Street south of 8 Avenue, forcing commercial truckers to go through Abbotsford’s Sumas Crossing instead, leading to heavy delays through that area.
But as of Tuesday morning, access to Pacific Highway was once again moving.
Mounties say another 12 people were arrested Monday night in connection with the now-ended blockade. The demonstrators were taken into custody around 8:30 p.m.
The arrests were for mischief and intimidation related charges, Cst. Sarbit Sangha says.
“The investigation into the blockade is on an ongoing basis, we are monitoring the situation. Our priority is to keep the peace and make sure that everyone’s, including the protesters’, safety is taken into account,” she told CityNews Tuesday.
In total, 16 people have been arrested in connection with the days-long protest. They have all since been released on a condition to appear in court.
The RCMP says “subsequent investigations are underway into unlawful activity” that’s said to have happened on Saturday, when the large group descended on the border crossing.
Sangha notes that involves the investigation into vehicles that breached a police barricade. Investigators are currently working to identify the people who were involved in this incident.
“We will forward any appropriate charges,” Sangha added.
Remaining vehicles that had been blocking 176 Street were also removed, and the major route has since reopened.
Pacific Highway border crossing in Blaine is open both directions to passenger and commercial traffic, however a sizable police presence remains near 8th.
— Peter Wagner (@peterjontheair) February 15, 2022
Sangha says people who live and work in the area of the border crossing can expect to see police around for the time being.
“We have checkpoints in the area. Our officers are monitoring the traffic that is flowing now through the border. The border was always open, it’s just the access to the border was blocked before,” she explained.
The Surrey RCMP said Monday it was working with federal and provincial RCMP units as well as the Canada Border Services Agency to respond to the situation.