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Friday, June 18, 2021

Plan ahead for Fourth of July Holiday

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With all eyes to the sky this Fourth of July holiday, the Department of Public Safety, in coordination with the Division of Homeland Security and IMPD, is reminding residents to put safety first and remember, if you See Something, Say Something.

Law enforcement and public safety officials across the country have been warned by federal authorities of heightened concern involving possible terror attacks targeting the July 4th holiday.

“While there was no specific or credible threat of attack, the intelligence bulletin prepared by the Department of Homeland Security and the FBI alerted our public safety agencies to the ongoing threats posed by the Islamic State and other homegrown extremists,” said Division of Homeland Security Chief Gary Coons. “The bulletins are frequently issued in advance of major U.S. holidays out of an abundance of caution and concern that operatives may exploit the timing to generate greater attention.”

Public Safety Director Troy Riggs said the public can help make this an enjoyable and fun-filled family weekend by remaining vigilant.

“Notify a public safety official in the downtown area if something doesn’t seem right,” Riggs said. “And always call 911 if there is an immediate threat. We want everyone to remember that if they see something, they should say something.”

And, with numerous events slated for downtown – from the concert on Georgia Street to the Indians game and the Regions Bank Building Freedom Fest fireworks display at 10 p.m. – traffic will be heavy in the area.

“Please remember there are little kids in all the parking areas,” Coons said. “As it gets dark they become harder to see, so please drive carefully.”

Also impacting traffic, the Rolling Stones concert at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway – where more than 50,000 people are expected. Police are asking residents to plan ahead and be patient.

“We want you to safely celebrate the Fourth of July events in the spirit of peace and cooperation,” said IMPD Police Chief Rick Hite.

If you are coming downtown, officials are asking you don’t use fireworks to avoid injuries, as well as difficulties from the smoke limiting visibility for people trying to park. Downtown traffic restrictions will also be in place:

  • West Block of Georgia Street open to pedestrian traffic only because of the concert
  • Capitol Street south of Washington Street will have limited restrictions due to the stage and concert on Georgia Street
  • Streets around the Regions Bank Building will be restricted during and after the fireworks
  • Don’t pull off the interstate in the emergency lanes, or block or restrict a lane of traffic in the city to watch the fireworks.
  • Don’t park where posted no parking signs are or your vehicle will be towed.

For those planning to use fireworks at home, hours for use in Marion County are:

  • 5 p.m. until two hours after sunset through July 3
  • 10 a.m. to midnight July 4
  • 5 p.m. until two hours after sunset July 5 – July 9
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