Five people were injured in a collision during a massive anti-vaccine mandate protest at the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco on Thursday.
Two California Highway Patrol officers and three bridge workers were struck by a car as hundreds of protesters rallied at the mouth of the bridge, the New York Post reported.
“They were gathered at the sidewalk entrance onto the Golden Gate Bridge, and apparently there were individuals in the crowd that had stated their intent was to take over the lane of traffic, so our intention at that point was to serve as a deterrent to try to prevent anybody from getting on,” CHP spokesman Andrew Barclay said.
Aerial footage shows an SUV hit a street sweeper and a parked truck that was part of a barricade keeping protesters out of traffic.
Here’s that crash near the anti-vaccine protest at the Golden Gate Bridge, as seen on NBC Bay Area.
Looks unintentional — clipped tires? pic.twitter.com/WIk1XImgEe
— Demian Bulwa (@demianbulwa) November 12, 2021
A CHP official said the crash was unrelated to the protest, according to KRON-TV.
The two officers and one bridge worker were hospitalized, the Post reported. They are expected to survive.
The San Francisco rally was the culmination of four days of anti-vaccine mandate protests across America, according to the Post.
A flyer for the rally read, “NO VAX MANDATES, no more fear-mongering, no more political overreach by our government. WE THE PEOPLE who come in all colors and CREEDS pledge to gather peacefully with courage and love in our hearts for our countrymen and country!” KRON reported.
Protesters said they were standing up for their rights.
“Conditioning your job in a jab that is still experimental … is not just unconstitutional, it’s unconscionable,” lawyer Leigh Dundas said.
“If you give up this right, what’s it going to be tomorrow?” said Lan Nguyen, who said she was fired from her radiology job for refusing to get vaccinated.
Protester Muhammad Ibn-Riqib said he also lost his job, adding that unvaccinated people face severe restrictions in progressive San Francisco.
“I can’t eat in a restaurant, I can’t go to a movie theatre if I’m not vaccinated,” he said, according to KTVU-TV.
Another protester said the mandate has an outsized impact on black people.
“There’s a lot of black people whose voices are silent in this fight, black people who are going to be unemployed. We’re talking about teachers and firefighters,” Hawk Newsom said.
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