A day after making a mess of traffic for drivers heading into D.C., the so-called “People’s Convoy” was at it again Tuesday.
WTOP Traffic Reporter Reada Kessler said they split into groups, at least three, and that I-295 and D.C. 295 were the most affected initially.
After encountering blocked ramps along D.C. Route 295 and Kenilworth Avenue, many of the trucks in the convoy went northbound into Maryland on the Baltimore-Washington Parkway, where commercial truck traffic is illegal, WTOP’s Dave Dildine reported.
Dildine said the convoy seemed to “call it a day” shortly before 3 p.m.
The groups were smaller and less spread out Tuesday, Dildine said, and the ramp closures were not as long as Monday’s. Still, some eastbound drivers on the Southeast/Southwest Freeway found their exits closed just after 2 p.m. Many of the ramps at the 11th Street Bridge interchange were closed during the early afternoon as authorities tried to send the trucks outbound.
The response to the convoy from D.C. residents is less than enthusiastic, as DC REALTIME NEWS noted.
OH BOY https://t.co/yyM9PAqXLr
— DC REALTIME NEWS (@RealTimeNews10) March 15, 2022
Video of the convoy that was streamed on platforms such as Twitch and YouTube showed that it largely populated by cars, consumer trucks, SUVs and RVs. CB chatter had members on the lookout for “infiltrators.”
Chat running alongside the stream on YouTube had conspiratorial suggestions about Ukraine, dirty money and child trafficking as well as pro-Putin comments. Others said President Joe Biden “started a war” to “distract” people from the convoy.
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Monday’s traffic meltdown stemmed from the trucker convoy. It spread out and moved through the District on interstates 395, 695 and 295 — eastbound on the Southeast/Southwest Freeway from the 14th Street Bridge to the 11th Street Bridge — as well as traffic control operations that blocked exits to keep traffic flowing.
Chris Rodriguez, the director of D.C. Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency, said the plan is to continue to block the offramps so the convoy would move through the District and head back to Hagerstown, where they have been congregating since last week.
“We have to assume it’s going to continue at least for the next several days,” Rodriguez said, but added that the number of trucks and vehicles in the group has decline significantly.
Last week, the “People’s Convoy,” a group of truckers and supporters, circled the Capital Beltway twice on Sunday and again on Monday, but didn’t cause major disruptions.
Dildine urged commuters to check traffic conditions before hitting the road.
WTOP’s Jack Moore contributed to this report.