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Port of Oakland reopens as trucker protest moves to free speech zone

Truckers protest gig-work law at Port of Oakland
Truckers protest gig-work law at Port of Oakland 02:48

OAKLAND (CBS SF) – Port officials announced Monday that the Port of Oakland's marine terminals re-opened that morning and were operating normally after truckers protested California's gig worker law for a week.

The truckers – owner-operator truck drivers who make up 90% of the Port's operation – began protesting last Monday over the law AB5 because it requires that trucking companies make their drivers employees, shutting out all the independent operators who own their own rigs. The law affects about 70,000 truck drivers in the state.

As part of their protest, the truckers lined up down the street and blocked trucks from entering the port. After a while, they made a deal with police to allow 10 trucks in every 30 minutes.

After seven days, the protest pulled back.

READ MORE: Truckers continue protest at Port of Oakland over new gig-worker law

"The Port of Oakland has resumed full operations," said Port Executive Director Director Danny Wan. "We appreciate the independent truck drivers' use of the designated Free Speech Zones and we thank local law enforcement for their continued assistance."

Port officials said that last week's protests "prevented the timely flow of international commerce including medical supplies, agricultural products, auto and technology parts, livestock, and manufacturing parts."

"The economic impact of the Port of Oakland's maritime operations in California is estimated at $56.6 billion, including $281 million in state and local taxes," a statement from port officials read. "Direct employment from the Port's maritime operations is estimated at 11,000 jobs--with an additional 10,000 induced jobs and nearly 6,000 indirect jobs."

It was unclear Monday whether or not California lawmakers will adjust AB5 to meet the needs of the truckers.

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