UPDATE – 3:30 PM EST Both Matt and Glen were arrested. The Tar Sands Blockade reports they were loaded into a police van and taken away. The police brought an ambulance to the scene and then removed the concrete barrels. The police entered the pipe to arrest the two Blockaders. And, while the arrest was taking place, they threatened a crowd of supporters with arrest if they did not leave the nearby area, including space where a homeowner had granted them permission to stand.
For months, a Tar Sands Blockade action group has been mobilizing direct actions against TransCanada’s construction of a tar sands pipeline. This morning, Matt Almonte and Glen Collins, entered a pipe segment that was to be laid into the ground and “locked themselves between to barrels of concrete weighing over six hundred pounds each.”
The two Blockaders are, as of 10:30 am CST, twenty-five feet into the pipe segment and successfully preventing TransCanada workers from proceeding with planned construction activity for the day. They have been in the pipe for the last two to three hours.
According to Tar Sands Blockade reports, police threatened to use tear gas at about 9:20 am CST. Sheriffs shined flashlights into the pipe. They apparently said aloud, “We will not be deterred by threats of violence.” They were also warned to leave the pipe or face arrest.
Less than an hour later, the sheriffs began to share how they would be bringing a “police dog” to the scene to remove Almonte and Collins from the pipe.
For the latest updates, follow the @Tar SandsBlockade on Twitter.