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"Potential travel delays" at Port of Sweetgrass

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Posted at 8:06 PM, Jan 29, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-30 14:31:42-05

GREAT FALLS — U.S. Customs & Border Protection (CBP) said in a news release on Saturday, January 29, 2022, that there are "potential travel delays" at the Sweetgrass, MT/Coutts, Alberta border crossing due to the closure of Canadian Highway 4, which is north of the border crossing.

The agency said just after 7 p.m. that Canadian Highway 4, north of the Sweetgrass, MT/Coutts, Alberta border crossing has been closed by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP).

The Port of Sweetgrass remains open, but people should be aware that their ability to travel north into Canada or south into the U.S. at the Sweetgrass/Coutts border crossing may be impaired.

If you are currently traveling or planning travel via the Sweetgrass Port of Entry, CBP advises that you seek alternate routes utilizing a different Port of Entry. A list of Ports of Entry in Montana may be found on the CBP website.

Although CBP did not specify the reason for the closure and delays, it is due to protests in solidarity with a convoy of truckers that arrived in the Canada capitol of Ottawa on Saturday.

CBC Calgary reported on Saturday: "RCMP say a large demonstration has blocked off Highway 4 in southern Alberta in both the north and southbound lanes near the village of Coutts, Alta., stopping traffic to and from the Canada-United States border crossing. Cars, trucks, farm tractors and other vehicles have filled the highway — from south of Lethbridge, Alta., to the Canada-United States border crossing in Coutts — in support of a national trucker convoy that has arrived in Ottawa, with a stated goal of protesting the trucker COVID-19 vaccine mandate."

The National Post of Canada says police in Ottawa expect the total number of "Freedom Convoy" vehicles will top out at between 1,000 and 2,000.