News & Politics

Washington Monument Closes to Repair Lightning Damage

The monument got hit early Sunday morning.

Photograph, not from Sunday's storm, by josephgruber, via iStock.

The Washington Monument was closed Monday while repairs were made after a lightning strike early on Sunday morning. The celestial intervention damaged the key-card system that allows National Park Service staffers to get into the building and call or send elevators, NPS spokesperson Mike Litterst tells Washingtonian. Late Monday afternoon, the Park Service announced the monument would be closed on Tuesday as well.

The monument is hit often by lightning—check out these dramatic images of strikes from 2021 and 2020.

This post has been updated.


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Senior editor

Andrew Beaujon joined Washingtonian in late 2014. He was previously with the Poynter Institute,, and Washington City Paper. His book A Bigger Field Awaits Us: The Scottish Soccer Team That Fought the Great War was published in 2018. He lives in Del Ray.