About a hundred people from around the region showed up to Vancouver, Wash., this morning to protest oil trains in the wake of the Mosier derailment and fire. Twenty-one people—mostly seniors and middle-aged folks with a handful of younger adult women—left in zip-tie handcuffs in the back of a Vancouver police van, charged with trespassing after refusing to get off train tracks for nearly four hours, blocking some trains from getting through.
The "mass civil disobedience action" was organized by the Fossil Fuel Resistance Network," a new group formed after the Mosier derailment.
The group got to the tracks around 9:30 this morning. They chanted, they sang, they used megaphones to voice their displeasure with oil trains. While Vancouver police used a loudspeaker to tell people they'll be arrested for trespassing if they don't leave, Ron Rose with the BSNF police department walked up to the group and gave them two warnings. The plan was for people to get arrested.
Soon, the 20+ people who were cool with getting arrested sat down in a circle on tracks. A short train approached, loudly blowing its whistle, stopping several dozen yards from the group. Vancouver police began plucking these folks one-by-one, using zip-tie handcuffs and ushering them to the back of a van. The crowd watching from the side cheered on the folks when they were picked out and arrested. It was all over at about 1 p.m., and then protesters headed to the jail to await the release of those arrested.
We'll have more in the coming days on oil trains but, for now, here's what the scene in Vancouver looked like: