Celebrating July 4: What you need to know about road closures, parades and illegal fireworks

WASHINGTON — In addition to the thousands of tourists expected to descend on D.C. for the annual fireworks show on the National Mall, this week will also see a July Fourth Nationals game and three Independence Day parades throughout city neighborhoods — all amid a 90-plus degree heat wave.

On Monday morning, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser and other District officials previewed the city’s preparations for the July Fourth holiday.



Road closures and parades

The road closures listed below are related to the National Independence Day parade, which runs along Constitution Avenue from 7th to 17th Streets, and the National Mall fireworks display Wednesday night.

The following roads will be closed from 5 a.m. July Fourth until approximately 11 p.m.

  • Theodore Roosevelt Bridge Inbound to Constitution Avenue. All traffic will be diverted to the E Street Expressway.
  • Independence Avenue, SW, from 15th Street to 23rd Street
  • 23rd Street Northbound from Constitution Avenue to Virginia Avenue, NW.
  • Southbound 23rd Street will be allowed to flow and access outbound Theodore Roosevelt Bridge.
  • 22nd Street, NW, from C Street to Constitution Avenue
  • 21st Street, NW, from C Street to Constitution Avenue
  • 20th Street, NW, from C Street to Constitution Avenue
  • 19th Street, NW, from Virginia Avenue to Constitution Avenue
  • 18th Street, NW, from Virginia Avenue to Constitution Avenue
  • 17th Street, NW from New York Avenue to Constitution Avenue
  • 15th Street, NW, from Pennsylvania Avenue to Independence Avenue, Southwest
  • Henry Bacon Drive Lincoln Memorial Circle to Constitution Avenue, NW
  • Constitution Avenue from 6th Street to 23rd Street, NW
  • Arlington Memorial Bridge
  • Southbound Rock Creek Parkway closed at Virginia Avenue, NW
  • 7th Street from Pennsylvania Avenue, Northwest, to Independence Avenue, SW
  • 4th Street from Pennsylvania Avenue, Northwest, to Independence Avenue, SW
  • 3rd Street from Pennsylvania Avenue to Independence Avenue, SW

Headed to the festivities on the Mall and around the Capitol? Find more information about specific road closures, pedestrian access to the National Mall and prohibited items here.

Closed from 3 am until approximately 11 pm:

  • 3rd Street from Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, and Maryland Ave, SW
  • The 3rd Street tunnel will remain open for the entire day. The 9th Street and 12th Street tunnels will be closed during the Independence Day Parade from approximately 11:15 a.m. until approximately 4 p.m..

Barracks Row Parade

The following roads will be closed from approximately 9 am until 11:30 am:

  • 8th Street, SE from Pennsylvania Avenue, SE to Virginia Avenue, SE
  • D Street, SE from 7th Street, SE to Pennsylvania Avenue, SE
  • E Street, SE from 7th Street, SE to 9th Street, SE
  • G Street, SE from 7th Street, SE to 9th Street, SE
  • I Street, SE from 7th Street, SE to 9th Street, SE

Palisades Parade

The following roads will be closed from approximately 8:30 a.m. until 12 p.m.:

  • MacArthur Boulevard from White Have Parkway to Edmunds Place, NW
  • Sherier Place, NW from MacArthur Boulevard to Edmunds Place, NW

In addition, there is a home game at Nationals Park Wednesday. The Boston Red Sox play the Nationals with first pitch at 11:05 a.m. Wednesday. See tips for getting to Nationals Park here.

Fire safety

Gregory Dean, chief of the D.C. Fire and EMS Department provided fire safety tips. Exploding and airborne fireworks, such as roman candles and cherry bombs, are illegal in D.C. Sparklers of less than 20 inches, torches, cones and fountains are all legal.

Still, Dean warned that even sparklers can be dangerous.

“So we’re saying this: Please consider going to the Mall — the greatest show on Earth right here in the District,” Dean said. “So that’s where we think you should go. It’s safe for you, safe for the kids.”

See where fireworks are allowed and where they’re prohibited elsewhere in the D.C. area.

Public Safety

D.C. Police Chief Peter Newsham said there are no credible threats to the D.C. area “and no indication of any specific attacks targeted our city. But we always need to be mindful that this is the nation’s capital. If you see something suspicious, let law enforcement personnel know about it.”

Newsham said D.C. police would staff up for the events on the Mall.

You can sign up for real-time public safety text alerts through the U.S. Park Police by texting JULY4DC to 888-777.

Be prepared for heat

The hazy, hot and humid weather is expected to stick around through the holiday. There is a chance for a late-day storm Wednesday.

D.C. will activate its heat-emergency plan if temperatures reach 95 degrees or above. That means some District facilities will be open as cooling centers

Find more details about cooling centers across the D.C. region.

Christopher Rodriguez, director of D.C.’s Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency, encouraged people to stay hydrated and watch for signs of heat stroke and other heat-related illnesses.

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