News & Politics

Police Block Highway Exits as Trucker Convoy Rolls Up I-395

Vehicles are honking and jamming up local roads with the apparent goal of getting a "glimpse of what the swamp looks like."

Trucks on the Beltway. Photograph by Flickr user Stephen Melkisethian.

A convoy of truckers and others who oppose President Biden, vaccine mandates, and lots of other stuff got off the Capital Beltway Monday and drove up I-395 toward downtown DC, where police say they’ve closed roads and exits into downtown.

Motorists should expect delays, authorities say.

The expedition to DC follows apparent frustration from members of the convoy—which has been camped out in Hagerstown, Maryland, for more than a week—stemming from the fact that very few people in Washington were paying attention to their protests. Up to this point convoy members have circled the Beltway, slowing down some commuters’ progress but otherwise having little effect. Researcher Sara Aniano of Monmouth University reports that some in the convoy pushed for more visibility by getting onto I-395, where police have deployed resources for more than a week in anticipation of their arrival.

 

The “People’s Convoy” hoped to hold a two-week-long demonstration on the National Mall, the Washington Post reports, but were unable to find dates that didn’t conflict with previously arranged events. A spokesperson for the National Park Service tells Washingtonian the People’s Convoy applied on Friday for a permit to rally on the National Mall but withdrew the application two days later. The group’s website still says it has no plans to go into DC.

Senior editor

Andrew Beaujon joined Washingtonian in late 2014. He was previously with the Poynter Institute, TBD.com, 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.