The machine starts pulling activist Thomas Chiang’s head and neck into a pole, while someone else can be heard screaming: “We need to stop this right now.”
Speaking to ABC7, Chiang said the machine was ‘almost decapitating my head from my neck’.
He said: “I was feeling my life leave my body as I was struggling to get out of that lock.”
Chiang had locked himself to the slaughter processing line. Credit: Direct Action Everywhere
Chiang admitted that he knew the protest was dangerous, with various signs around Petaluma’s Reichardt Duck Farm in California warning ‘Keep Out, Biosecure Area’.
But the group entered at their own risk in protest against the abuse they believe animals face at the farm, and secured themselves to machinery with u-locks.
“We have to escalate all of our actions because this is a global crisis we’re under,” Chiang said.
However, things took a worrying turn when the conveyor line suddenly started moving.
Chiang explained: “I think whoever the manager was, whoever was working there, was extremely upset that we were disrupting his business.”
In the video footage, Chiang’s face looks dangerously red, and you can see him struggling to get out of the lock.
Thankfully, he managed to escape from the lock, before being taken to hospital by an ambulance.
While he was told his injuries will heal, Chiang is still deciding whether or not to file a police report about the incident.
Chiang said he could feel his life leaving his body. Credit: Direct Action Everywhere
According to ABC7, the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office said that when they looked into the incident, Reichardt Farm told them it was an accident.
The farm claimed an employee had turned the machine on without realising protesters were shackled to it.
Posting the footage on social media, Direct Action Everywhere wrote: “Watch the groundbreaking mission where activists locked themselves to the machinery of a massive duck slaughterhouse – and one activist almost died.”
Many Facebookers commended Chiang and co. for their bravery.
One person said: “Some very brave humans! Thank you for working to make a difference in this world!”
A second added: “Omg this requires lots of courage! People around the world are supporting you.”
Others, however, weren’t quite so full of praise, with many deeming the stunt ‘stupid’.
“This isn’t bravery, it’s trespassing,” someone wrote.
Featured Image Credit: Direct Action Everywhere