The police at home and abroad are facing a new challenge: they have to repeatedly detach demonstrators who are stuck on the street from the pavement. In the meantime, the officials have gained experience. Which methods of asphalt removal have proven themselves?

This topic affects almost everyone: demonstrators who want to stop climate change, for example, stick to the asphalt, bake the pavement or seem inextricably linked to the tar on the street. When the police arrive, they are faced with the task of removing the demonstrators from the pavement without injuring them. How does it work? Focus online did a poll.

The officials in Berlin undoubtedly have the most experience in this matter in Germany. There, the climate protesters of the group “Last Generation” regard self-adhesiveness in public space as a legitimate protest. Just recently, seven activists got stuck at the Frankfurter Tor and elsewhere, which even angered SPD interior senator Iris Spranger because the activists were obstructing rescue operations. “Anyone who hinders helpers, falsely alarms rescuers, robs people in need of help and endangers them and puts their lives at risk,” Spranger changed half-heartedly.

The police must therefore act quickly and the emergency services have now received instructions on how to proceed. The drug of choice is cooking oil, as a police spokesman explains on request. It has been found that edible oil can cope with a wide variety of adhesives. The demonstrators have a lot of them in their arsenal: from quick-hardening sealant, like the ones do-it-yourselfers use to plug cracks in drainpipes, to tried-and-tested superglue, to self-mixed adhesive that is mixed with sand to harden more quickly. Cooking oil is unbeatable against all these bonding methods, the police spokesman explains.

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The police in Hesse are using another means. The people of Frankfurt have also been suffering from the problem of stuck demonstrators for months. For example, a police report in April stated that important road connections had been blocked in this way in nine places at the same time, including Miquelallee as the main access road. By late morning, some of the blockades had been cleared, meaning the officials had removed the protesters from the asphalt. “We use dishwashing liquid and then scratch very carefully,” reports a spokesman for the Frankfurt police. The soapy water is poured onto the hand or other stuck body parts as well as onto the surrounding street and, after a short exposure time, the demonstrator can be detached from the pavement with practically no pain.

The police abroad are now also studying the procedures of their German colleagues and are conducting their own tests. In Zurich, for example, the city police are responsible for removing the tar from climate activists that have been glued on. In order to proceed as gently as possible to the skin, the police, like their Berlin colleagues, prefer “vegetable oil”, as police spokeswoman Judith Hödl reports. Alcohol-based disinfectants might also work. The protection and rescue department was always involved. “In the meantime, however, we have seen that detachment is relatively easy,” says their spokesman to the Swiss magazine “Weltwoche”. In the worst case, it comes to a slight reddening or abrasion. “You don’t need an ambulance for that, that would be disproportionate.” Also helpful for putting an end to civil disobedience is: warm water with soap, acetone, a three percent hydrogen peroxide solution or nail polish remover. The roadblock then disappears as if by magic.

In Cologne, the police are watching the scene closely. The officials there have so far only had experience with chained demonstrators, for example in the neighboring Hambach Forest. The pavement of the cathedral city has so far been spared from pasting. “Toi, toi, toi – that can stay like this,” says a spokesman and, as a precaution, points out that every self-adhesive action is linked to a report of suspected coercion in road traffic and the initiation of criminal investigations.

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The article “This is the solution against climate glue” comes from WirtschaftsKurier.