What to Know
Hundreds of motorcyclists gathered in a park and ride before flooding the Beltway about 1 p.m.
They drove between lanes, on shoulders and performed stunts, making drivers nervous.
Maryland State Police deployed 40 additional troopers, saying their aim was to keep things safe.
Hundreds of bikers made drivers anxious on the Capital Beltway in Maryland Sunday, popping wheelies and riding on the shoulder.
The group gathered in a park and ride in Oxon Hill and got on the Beltway about 1 p.m., WTOP first reported.
“We started seeing motorcyclists start pouring onto the Outer Loop of the Beltway,” said WTOP Traffic Reporter David Dildine. “There were so many at one point, actually, that they were spread out over a couple of miles.”
Dildine has been watching area roads for 15 years.
“And we did see a lot of reckless behavior,” he said. “We saw lane-splitting, we saw driving on shoulders, driving the wrong way, wheelies, burnouts.”
“People were kind of frantic,” said Mary, who was caught in the middle of it and didn’t want to be identified. “You could see distraught people. Like, I was sitting on the shoulder and you could see people in their cars. They were nervous. They were scared.”
Maryland State Police responded to reports with 40 additional troopers to keep the bikers in line. Their goal was safety.
“There were no injuries reported,” said Ron Snyder of Maryland State Police. “The roads remained open, and the flow of traffic continued. Law enforcement is more than just about making arrests. It’s about keeping the public safe.”
Maryland State Police said they do not chase motorcyclists involved in misdemeanor traffic infractions, saying that could have dire consequences for the biker, the trooper and bystanders.
Police from Montgomery and Prince George’s counties and troopers from Virginia State Police also were involved, WTOP reported.
Dildine said there were many law-abiding bikers on the Beltway on Sunday.
"I think it is unfortunate that the illegal actions of a few reflect poorly on the community as a whole," he said.