Truck blockade at international crossing in Canada raises concern in tri-state area – CBS New York
UNION CITY, NJ (CBS New York) – For five days, protesters have blocked North America’s busiest international crossing to protest COVID vaccination mandates, and it’s raising concerns in the tri-state area.
“It’s like a chain reaction, basically,” said Edward Brioso, owner of 2 Manny’s Auto Sales in Union City.
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Brioso told CBS2’s Cory James that he’s been watching what’s happening at the Canadian border closely.
“I don’t know how much worse it can get at this point,” he said.
But he is bracing for the unknown as truckers protest and create lockdowns in Canada over COVID vaccine requirements for drivers.
It’s a move that could make it even harder for his family business to get vehicles from about half a dozen new car dealerships.
“New car trade-ins and lease returns, we acquire those directly through them,” Brioso said.
The protest comes at a time when supply shortages are already forcing production shutdowns at auto plants in several states.
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The White House raised concerns on Friday.
“This effort has the potential to have a tremendous impact on workers and the American public,” said White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki.
Some automakers are now chartering cargo planes to fly parts across the border as the Canadian government declares a state of emergency.
In New York, Governor Kathy Hochul tweeted that her team was monitoring the situation and preparing for any impact.
My team is monitoring the situation of the protests against Canadian trucks on the northern border in New York. We have convened an interagency command center to ensure we are prepared for any impact on New Yorkers.
— Kathy Hochul (@GovKathyHochul) February 12, 2022
Brioso hopes dealerships and its workers in the tri-state area won’t feel these potential impacts.
“When it comes to firing employees, I’m a positive thinker. I would love to say no, but as part of business thinking you have to plan for the future,” he said.
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Due to the operational disruptions, Ford said it was operating its plants at reduced capacity in Canada.