Pat Bay highway shut down by supporters of Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs

Supporters of the Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs in their dispute over the Coastal GasLink pipeline shut down the Patricia Bay Highway in Saanichton on Wednesday.

About three dozen people, some with drums, signs and flags, took to the highway where it meets Mt. Newton Cross Road around 2 p.m.

First Nations people, environmental activists — some with the group Extinction Rebellion — and others joined the blockade.

RCMP attended the scene, but have so far not intervened.

The provincial government, which operates the highway, has obtained a court injunction ordering the route to be cleared.

The injunction covers Highway 17 from Tolmie Road to Land’s End Road at the north end of the Saanich peninsula.

The highway is both a major commuter route and a key route to the BC Ferries Swartz Bay terminal.

BC Ferries said it was aware of the protest, and that police were detouring motorists to several alternative routes to the terminal, but warned travellers to plan extra time into their trip and to be ready for delays.

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