Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Take Common-Sense Steps to Prepare for the Inauguration

Hi all ... I got these tips from Fairfax County (delivered to my facebook inbox) and thought them worth passing along. As well as a full tank of gas, I would also carry water, food, blankets, a fully-charged cell phone and a disaster kit in your car. If you have problems, it may take a long time for help to get to you. Cathleen

Local government officials from across the National Capital Region are asking residents to take common-sense steps to prepare for the inauguration.

“Even if you don’t plan to attend any of the inaugural events, they will have an impact on your daily life on Jan. 20,” said Fairfax County Executive Anthony H. Griffin, speaking on behalf of the region’s chief administrative officers. “Residents should be ready for crowds, traffic and delays — even in areas well outside the District of Columbia. However, there are simple steps everyone can take to be prepared.”

Take these steps to get ready:

Make a Plan
• Consider teleworking on Jan. 20 if possible. Carpool if you are traveling into the District of Columbia. Cars will be restricted from some parts of the city, and it will be difficult to find parking.

• Be sure to have a full tank of gas before you go anywhere in the region, or you may become stranded while waiting in traffic. Heavy volume is expected on roads, bridges and highways across the region.

• Although Jan. 20 is a federal holiday and a holiday in many jurisdictions, some localities are enforcing weekday parking regulations. Be sure to plan ahead.

• Bring your patience because there will be delays getting to your destination. Some roads, bridges and highways may be closed temporarily, and mass transit systems will be extremely crowded.

• Be ready to walk long distances — especially in the District of Columbia — because some Metro stations and roads will be closed.

Stay Informed
• Visit www.inauguration.dc.gov to get information about road, bridge and highway closures, parking restrictions and mass transit plans.

• Sign up to D.C. Alerts for real-time information on Jan. 20 about road closures, weather and more. Subscribe at www.inauguration.dc.gov.

Be Prepared
• If you plan to attend any inaugural events, consider whether you can stand outside in large crowds for up to six hours and whether you are ready for long delays getting home afterwards.

• Bring with you any medications that you need because there will be very long delays in getting to and from events.

• Be aware that it may be difficult to talk or send pictures from your cell phone, according to wireless companies. Send text messages instead of making calls when possible.

For more information, visit www.fairfaxcounty.gov/news/inauguration/