Occupy Wall Street protesters in New York are experiencing the exact opposite of being “smoked out” of a situation by police. As temperatures dip to bone-chilling temperatures in the North, the city ordered firefighters to snatch up power generators and gas cans during a coordinated inspection in Zuccotti Park.
The move is also forcing demonstrators to come up with innovative solutions to power up their laptop computers and mobile phones.
The FDNY issued a statement about the inspection in the park known to the protesters as Liberty Square, where they have camped since Sept. 17. The occupants were “cooperative” during the 30-minute inspection, the fire department said.
“This action was taken to address the dangerous conditions posed by the presence and/or use of flammable and combustible liquids and portable generators in a public space, which is prohibited under New York City law,” the statement said.
The skies above New York are growing colder as the weather is expected to drop to the low 30s this weekend, with possible rain, wind and snow. These are not ideal conditions for protesting or being outside for prolonged periods. Frostbite and hypothermia become very real prospects heading into the coldest months of the year.
The FDNY said no one will be permitted to bring portable generators or flammable liquids into the park, and it will continue to monitor conditions at the park “to ensure public safety is maintained with regard to fire and life safety.” —terry shropshire