The “Freedom 2022” trucker convoy continues to roll through Canada and is expected to pass through Kingston on Thursday evening. In response, Kingston Police have now announced that Gardiners Road and Highway 38 will be temporarily closed to all traffic near Highway 401.
“While not condoning or approving of the convoy, Kingston Police is working in conjunction with the Ontario Provincial Police, Kingston Fire & Rescue, Frontenac Paramedic Services, and various departments with the City of Kingston to reduce any impact on the Kingston community and surrounding area,” wrote Kingston Police in a news release.
The roadway is expected to be closed at 5pm on January 27th and is expected to be closed for at least two to three hours, “possibly reopening at approximately 8:00 p.m,” say police.
It’s currently unclear how long the truck convoy is, but one unnamed organizer claimed that the convoy stretches 70 kilometers, while another report by CTV News claimed that the convoy was 20km long in Manitoba.
OPP say that they intend to get an accurate count of the convoy as they make their way through Ontario.
While the roadway is closed, only emergency vehicles will be allowed access through this closure point. Kingston Transit is also not expected to provide service at the INVISTA centre during the closure.
The movement’s website states that truckers from several Southern Ontario cities will be converging at 1525 Centennial Drive and remain in Kingston overnight. They will then make their way to Ottawa beginning at 8:30 am on Friday.
Supporters against vaccine mandates have been joining truckers as they make their way to Ottawa, however some founders of the convoy are worried that “extremist elements” are latching on.
Tamara Lich, who started a GoFundMe in support of the convoy, has publicly distanced herself from at least one person who is known to have extremist views. So far, $5.8 million has been donated towards the GoFundMe.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has denounced the “fringe minority” of people on their way to Ottawa. “The small fringe minority of people who are on their way to Ottawa do not represent the view of Canadians,” said Trudeau in a press conference.