Significant backups at the Blue Water Bridge November 11, 2014.
( File photo by Sue Storr)Significant backups at the Blue Water Bridge November 11, 2014. ( File photo by Sue Storr)

Slow rolling truck protests expected in Sarnia-Lambton

Truck protests are expected to impact traffic in Sarnia-Lambton this week.

According to the Aamjiwnaang Notification System, Lambton OPP is expecting slow moving convoys of commercial vehicles to impact traffic on Highway 402 and municipal streets in Sarnia and Point Edward.

Truckers are expected to conduct a slow-roll loop on Highway 402 from Front Street to Airport Road, from dawn until dusk, from Sunday to Thursday evening.

After the local demonstration, it's expected the truckers will join Canada-wide convoys travelling to Ottawa for a rally January 29.

A spokesman with the national protest, Chris Barber, told Sarnia News Today that truckers are fed up with COVID-19 mandates and are unifying for change.

"I've heard projections of 350,000 to 500,000 people marching on Ottawa," said Barber. "These aren't anti-vaccination protests, these are anti-mandate protests. We want to make sure everybody knows there's a difference between that. We are tired of the government telling us we need papers to go into businesses to support local restaurants. The straw that broke the camel's back was the border mandates for passport requirements for crossing the international border."

Barber said their group is not involved in border shutdowns or any convoy that shuts traffic down.

"We've united pretty much the whole country. We have huge support behind us. Some of the high tech media companies are actually portraying it as negative against the truckers, saying we're anti-vax and we're out for violence, we are not. We are peaceful. I want to make sure everybody knows that. (We're) completely, 100 per cent, peaceful."

Barber couldn't speak to what was being planned in Sarnia-Lambton, but said the demonstration he's involved in has notified law enforcement and emergency vehicles will always be given the right-of-way.

"We want answers and we want mandates lifted and things to go back to normal," he said.

Sarnia News Today reached out to Ontario Provincial Police on Friday to confirm details of the local demonstration.

“The OPP is aware of the event and continues to monitor its progress in an effort to ensure public safety," Regional Media Relations Coordinator Derek Rogers said in a brief emailed statement. "The media and the public will be advised of any potential traffic disruptions.”

A vaccine mandate for cross-border truckers coming into Canada came into effect January 15.

Canadian truckers who are not fully vaccinated have to show proof of a negative PCR test collected within 72 hours of arriving at the border and will need to quarantine after arrival, while unvaccinated American drivers will be denied entry.

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