Business, Finance & Economics

Generators taken from Occupy Wall Street protesters in New York City


Men stand in Zuccotti Park in the Financial District where 'Occupy Wall Street' protesters are living on October 17, 2011 in New York City.


Spencer Platt

New York City firefighters on Friday seized six generators and 13 cans of gasoline from Occupy Wall Street protesters in Zuccotti Park, The New York Times reports

According to the Times, the items were turned over voluntarily, and no arrests were made. The items were considered a safety hazard. 

On his weekly radio show, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said that 30 or 40 firefighters had gone through the park, the Times reports, and he praised the protesters cooperation. 

“You can’t complain when, notified about the safety hazard, the protesters voluntarily took their generators and cans and turned them in,” Bloomberg said.

Ed Needham, a spokesperson for the protesters, said that the generators were being used to power media and communication operations, not for heat. 

More from GlobalPost: Occupy arrests in San Diego, Nashville

A report by Reuters says otherwise. According to Reuters, the generators had been used for heat, and snow is forecast for New York City over the weekend. 

"They think that taking the 'power' away will take the power away, and that's absolutely not true at all," Occupy Wall Street spokesman Michael Booth, told Reuters. 

The Wall Street Journal reports that one of the generators had been used to power a small heater in the group's medical tent.

“The temperatures drop and that’s when they decide to take the generators,” Marie Fehlig, a volunteer in the medical tent, told the Journal. “We saw 25 cases of hypothermia last night. You can’t warm someone up in the elements.”

Fehlig said the medical tent was now using propane for heat.