President-elect Joe Biden will become the next president of the United States as numbers of National Guard troops patrol Washington, D.C., streets, fencing loaded with razor wire rings the Capitol. Moreover, a big portion of D.C. is facing closure. Security is tight in the city ahead of the Inauguration Day of Biden on Wednesday after the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) gives warning of threats to the city. It also warned the possibility of armed groups signifying in support of going President Donald Trump.
Coming President Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris will take their oaths in office fifteen days after a mob of angry supporters of Trump stormed the Capitol in an angry protest intending at discomforting a peaceful transfer of power. During that protest, five people died, including a United States Capitol police officer. The leaders of Washington D.C., Virginia, and Maryland said that they don’t come to D.C. to witness the inauguration procedure.
Last week, Maryland Governor Larry Hogan, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser, and Virginia Governor Ralph Northam shared a mutual statement in which they said that because of the exceptional circumstances surrounding the 59th Presidential Inauguration of the United States, including previous week’s violent insurgence, along with the ongoing deadly coronavirus pandemic, the officials prepared to take extraordinary measures of encouraging the public not to come to Washington, D.C. Instead, Americans can participate virtually in the inaugural process.
What is Shut Down in D.C.?
Fences surround the Capitol; authorities closed many Metro stations as well as the United States Secret Service and other law enforcement agencies dramatically expanded the restricted area for drivers. A 7-feet-high, unclimbable fence encircles the Capitol. Furthermore, armed National Guard troops patrol the whole area, and military vehicles are also patrolling on streets. The officials closed the Capitol complex for the public and restricted the grounds for use on Inauguration Day.
Capitol Police stated that anybody trying to illegally gain access to the Capitol Grounds by climbing a fence or any other criminal means subject to proper use of force and arrest. Several blocks all over the White House locked down by the authorities. Anybody trying to enter the area can expect a security screening. Likewise, authorities may demand to see proof that people are in the zone for an essential reason.
More bridges closing and the latest on restrictions that start tomorrow. We have you covered on @nbcwashington tonight. And a reminder, the Chain, Key and East Capitol Street bridges all will remain open as of now. #InaugurationDay pic.twitter.com/XogzbNWyNl
— Adam Tuss (@AdamTuss) January 18, 2021
The administration restricted the area for drivers as far east as Sixth Street NE, as far north as Dupont Circle, as far west as the Potomac River, and as far south as the Southeast/Southwest Freeway. Likewise, a smaller area would also close to vehicles. According to the Secret Service, the D.C. road closures and restrictions will remain in place until after the inauguration. The security authorities restrict all loading docks and parking garages in the White House zone. Authorities say that any vehicle remaining in any loading dock or parking garage within the zone will be stuck there until the inauguration completes.
Further details of closures ahead of Inauguration
The restrictions from the administration apply to commercial and residential buildings. Similarly, business deliveries must need to receive a special screening at an off-site facility. Several bridges that cross the Anacostia River and Potomac River will also be closed. If someone needs to travel between Virginia and Washington D.C., or between Ward 7 and Ward 8 as well as the remainder of the city, make plans now. Additionally, the bridge closures will be in effect from 06:00 am Tuesday to 06:00 am Thursday, according to the Secret Service.
The Metro United States announced that it would close thirteen stations include the security perimeter, through 21st January. Citizens will face closures of the following Metrorail:
- Red/Green/Yellow Line Station: Gallery Place
- Red Line stations: Judiciary Square, Metro Center, Farragut North, Union Station
- Green/Yellow Line station: Archives
- Blue Line station: Arlington Cemetery
- Orange Line, Blue Line, and Silver Line stations: McPherson Square, Farragut West, Federal Triangle, Federal Center SW, Smithsonian, Capitol South
However, the Pentagon station will face closure only on Inauguration Day.
Trains will pass through the above-specified stations without stopping and are operating on a schedule of Saturday of every twelve minutes on the Red Line and every fifteen minutes on every other line. Moreover, twenty-six bus routes rerouted around the security boundary. Metrobus will operate its normal service for a whole week to accommodate passengers making trips outside the security zone, with the exclusion of Inauguration Day, when buses will perform their services on a Saturday schedule.
What are the potential Security Threats?
The Federal Bureau of Investigation warned of threats to Washington D.C., including federal monuments and policymakers, and the possibility of armed groups performing their services in the District on Inauguration Day. An FBI note with information from several federal law enforcement agencies took information from different sources, including social media. Whereas the memo warned of probable threats from the online actors, NBC News reported.
Washington D.C. Acting Police Chief Robert Contee stated that his department faces notable security threats. Contee said that in his pro-long career with the Metropolitan Police Department, he had never experienced several agencies provide such a high level of help for managing a large event. D.C. has a National Special Security Event Status, and the authorities increase security to a maximum level.
The former head of the United States Secret Service National Threat Assessment Center, Matthew Doherty, says that it is all hands on deck for this from the local, state, and federal intelligence communities and law enforcement agencies. Mayor Muriel Bowser says that they are very positive about the type of coordination, just like with other National Special Security Events.