DC parking enforcement restarts next week; Bowser touts vaccine preregistration numbers

Well, that’s one way to mark the anniversary of COVID-19 in the nation’s capital: D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser said Thursday that the District will restart parking enforcement next week.

“We want to make sure residents know that we are resuming parking enforcement for vehicles violating no parking signs and school zones,” Bowser said, adding that between Monday and Friday (March 15-19) no fines will be issued but vehicles violating the rules will be located.

The week after, starting March 22, $25 tickets will be given out.

Specific violations will be enforced:

  • No parking in school zones.
  • Non-commercial vehicles illegally parked in commercial loading zones.
  • Large vehicles, 22 feet and over, illegally parked next to a recreational park, school, church or residential domicile.
  • Safety violations, such as vehicles illegally in or near bike lanes, crosswalks, fire hydrants, etc.

Bowser said drivers should “stay tuned” because further enforcement will “switch on” in the near future.

She said she could not immediately provide the numbers for how much revenue D.C. has lost by suspending enforcement in the early days of the pandemic.

Asked why enforcement was coming back now, Bowser said D.C. has seen “parking problems evolve” in residential areas and commercial loading areas.

“And now that all of our schools are operational, we see problems in schools. And so you should consider this a phase where we are getting more of our employees back. We have more to enforce because there’s more activity in the city. And we will continue that ramp-up,” Bowser said.

DC touts preregistration website success

After weeks of frustration for D.C. residents seeking to register for a coronavirus vaccine dose, the city said its new preregistration site has been a success.

According to the city, more than 77,000 people had signed up by 8 p.m. Wednesday.

The first group of 13,550 invitations for residents who registered are scheduled to go out Friday morning.

Bowser said she’s also hoping to see people sign up to become “vaccine buddies” in an effort to make sure older D.C. residents get vaccinated.

“We continue to ask our neighbors and friends and pastors and cousins and nieces and nephews to check in on our senior neighbors,” Bowser said.

Updated CDC guidance for those who are vaccinated

D.C. Health Director Dr. LaQuandra Nesbitt provided updated social guidance for those who are fully vaccinated — defined as those who are symptom-free two weeks after they have received the second dose in a two-dose series (Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna), or two weeks after they have received a single-dose vaccine (Johnson & Johnson).

“The full vaccination means that your body has now had the appropriate amount of time to respond to the vaccine and began to produce antibodies that can protect you from infection in terms of the severe disease and hospitalizations that we know these vaccines can prevent,” Nesbitt said.

According to CDC guidelines, fully vaccinated residents can:

  • Visit with other fully vaccinated people indoors without wearing masks or physical distancing.
  • Visit with unvaccinated people from a single household who are at low risk for severe COVID-19 disease indoors without wearing masks or physical distancing.
  • Refrain from quarantine and testing following a known exposure if asymptomatic.

DC looks into loosening restrictions

Mayor Bowser said that D.C. will make an announcement Monday with regard to loosening COVID-19 restrictions.

“We’ve already mentioned to you that we will take a mid-month look at restrictions and then we’ll do more as …  spring happens. So we expect to talk to you on Monday about some loosening of Phase Two restrictions,” Bowser said.

More Coronavirus News

Looking for more information? D.C., Maryland and Virginia are each releasing more data every day. Visit their official sites here: Virginia | Maryland | D.C.

Will Vitka

William Vitka is a Digital Editor and reporter for WTOP.com. He's been in the news industry for over a decade. Before joining WTOP, he worked for CBS News, Stuff Magazine, The New York Post and wrote a variety of books—about a dozen of them, with more to come.

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