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Ambassador Bridge blockade: Windsor mayor seeks injunction to remove protestors

Canada-US Bridge
Posted at 2:52 PM, Feb 10, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-10 19:53:24-05

(WXYZ) — Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens said he is seeking an injunction to begin removing protestors who have been blocking the Ambassador Bridge for the past several days.

In a press conference Thursday afternoon, Dilkens said he is hoping for a peaceful resolution, but the truckers and other protestors blocking the bridge are trespassing and will be removed if they have to reopen the bridge.

Related: Matt Moroun urges Canada to end vaccine mandate or remove vehicles blocking Ambassador Bridge

According to Dilkens, he's hoping to be in front of a Superior Court Judge by Thursday afternoon to get an injunction granted.

According to Dilkens, if the injunction is granted, police will be able to use it to remove the protestors.

"If we can't get them to leave voluntarily, other measures will be taken," Dilkens said.

He said they have requested a larger presence from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the Ontario Provincial Police just in case they are needed to remove the truckers.

On Monday, the Freedom Convoy, a group of truckers protesting COVID-19 vaccine mandates and other restrictions in Canada, blocked traffic from coming and going on the bridge. It later opened up to US-bound traffic only. Dilkens said the protest has turned into an anti-government protest.

The Ambassador Bridge is the busiest port of entry between the U.S. and Canada, carrying more than $400 million in goods each day.

Those trucks that can't get across the bridge are being re-routed to the Blue Water Bridge in Port Huron, which has been causing long backups for commercial vehicles over the course of the last few days.

Dilkens also said in the press conference that the State of Michigan and Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer have offered to help provide equipment to tow the vehicles, people for security and more.

On Thursday morning, Whitmer released a statement urging Canada to get the bridge back open.

“My message is simple: reopen traffic on the bridge," Whitmer said in a press release. “In Michigan, our economy continues to grow because of our hardworking people and innovative small businesses. Now, that momentum is at risk. Commercial traffic is at a standstill at the Ambassador Bridge and heavily backed up at the Blue Water Bridge."

On Wednesday, the White House said it is also closely monitoring the situation, and working with state, federal and even automotive leaders to get the bridge back open. The blockade has stopped auto parts and many other goods from going across the border, leading to plant shutdowns for Stellantis, General Motors, Toyota and more because of parts shortages.

If the injunction is granted, it's not clear when police would move in to clear the protestors, but Dilkens did reiterate that he hopes to have a peaceful solution.