Insulate Britain protesters dragged off roads by furious lorry drivers amid supply chain crisis

·3-min read

Insulate Britain protesters have again clashed with furious drivers as the campaign group blocked roads in Essex.

Lorry drivers blasted their horns and a female protester was nearly run over by a frustrated motorist as the environmental campaign group blocked roads for a 13th time, on Wednesday morning.

Multiple confrontations occurred at around 8.30am, with demonstrators dragged off the roads by drivers near a busy industrial estate.

About 40 people stopped traffic by the north end of the Dartford Crossing near Purfleet Freight Terminal.

Videos and pictures have shown furious HGV drivers dragging protestors out of the road in an attempt to avoid traffic delays caused by the group. Horns could be heard blaring from multiple cars and lorries blocked in by the demonstration, as drivers began tearing up Insulate Britain banners and even pushing and kicking protestors.

HGV drivers at the scene pleaded with protesters to move before the scene. One driver said: “This is not helping... You’ve made your point. My business is on its knees – we’ve got massive haulage problems in the UK,” LBC reported.

At one point a lorry driver can be seen attempting to slowly drive into protestors before braking.

Motorists ripped banners out of the hands of demonstrators as they sat or laid down in the road.

Others had glued themselves to the carriageway, causing long queues of cars.

A female protester was almost run over after stopping in front of a blue Hyundai car, and was berated by the driver who told her, "This is stupidity."

Some members of the group were dragged off the road multiple times by drivers, who pulled their backpacks and clothing, after immediately returning to their spots and sitting down again.

Footage circulated online showed one woman get out of her black Range Rover and argue with those gathered around her car.

"Move out of the f****** way, my son needs to get to school," she told demonstrators.

"I don't care what the f****** issue is. My son is 11 and he needs to get to school today, so move out of the way and let me get him to school."

Police later arrived and removed more protesters from the roads.

Essex Police said they had made a total of 35 arrests at the scene and acknowledged the frustration faced by motorists.

Drivers drag protesters out of the street (supplied)
Drivers drag protesters out of the street (supplied)

HGV drivers also warned that the protests could cause the ongoing fuel crisis to worsen as tankers will be unable to reach filling stations.

One driver told LBC news: "If this protest stays here for much longer, I'm afraid the night shift driver will not be able to deliver fuel for any garages or anyone.

"So talking about lorry driver shortages and fuel shortages, today it may get worse. This is a hotspot.

"We also deliver to commercials, bus garages, train depots, which are all essential for transport."

Delivery driver Robert J Foulger, 57, said: "There were nine police vehicles there and countless officers not out catching criminals, costing the taxpayer money.

"I took pictures whilst sitting in traffic trying to deliver fresh produce to a supermarket distribution centre.

"I was on the moving side of traffic so didn't wait long, luckily."

Demonstrations from the group have continued despite a court injunction that threatens to prosecute protestors campaigning on the M25 and Port of Dover. The injunction implemented by transport secretary Grant Shapps and home secretary Priti Patel has not stopped protests in other parts of the UK, prompting some to call for tougher measures.

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