Update on Lelu Island, January 28, 2016
by Stop Pacific NorthWest LNG/Petronas on Lelu Island, Jan 28, 2016
On Thursday January 28 two of our boats went out to a hot spot for catching crabs near the Flora Bank. Unfortunately one of the drilling barges was right on top of the spot. Upon approaching the area, the Pacific Northwest LNG contractor boat “Glacial Mist”, owned by Brian Catherall, started in our direction to catch up with us. As we got close to the crabbing spot the “Glacial Mist” turned into our boat, ramming us at a high speed. The ridges on their hull got stuck on our bow. The skill of our vessel operator prevented our boat from capsizing.
After the ramming, our boats proceeded to the fishing spot and the Glacial Mist, carrying three private security guards, cut in front to block us again. At this point we asked them to move their boat so we could fish, and they refused, despite their attempts at preventing us from fishing. We set the trap anyway and after only a few minutes caught a couple crabs for supper.
These events took place days after the Salmon Nation summit where the Flora Bank was declared permanently off limits to industrial development by hereditary leaders from different nations in the Skeena watershed. Despite this popular decision of opposition, work continues on Flora Bank. It has become clear that industry and government are trying to make this project happen despite public opinion.
This is now the third incident of a PNW LNG contractor ramming one of our vessels. The first ramming was on Oct 28, 2015 near the location of the proposed bridge from the mainland to Lelu. The second incident was on Jan 19: our vessel operator was knocked over in the boat and the required a visit to the hospital. There have been at least six documented ramming attempts.
As always, we are looking for more support in the form of people and boats on the water, as well as financial donations.
May the “forces of know” shut down Petronas!!