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February 12, 2016

Have a question about some aspect of working at NIH? You can post anonymous queries at and we’ll try to provide answers.

Feedback: Would it be possible for NIH to allow for 2 car entrance lanes after 10 a.m. in situations where the government has a 2-3 hour weather-related delay? When I entered at Old Georgetown Rd. and Center Dr. today [Jan. 28] , there was only 1 lane open at 10:05 a.m. and there was a gigantic back-up of cars waiting to enter NIH from Old Georgetown Rd. (causing a traffic jam). I asked one of the two officers if they could open up the second entrance lane due to the huge traffic back-up, and he said, “No, that is against NIH policy.” While that may be true, I think it’s time to change that policy on weather-delay days.

Response from the Office of Research Services, NIH Police: Yes. Although the decision is based on the specific situation, and not just for weather-related delays, police officers are authorized to keep an entrance or entrances open and staffed with attendant personnel as long as necessary. However, the decision will be based on actual conditions—if traffic is heavy, the entrance will remain open; if traffic is light, it will close at its designated time.
The NIH Police have limited resources but strive to utilize them prudently and effectively. We will reiterate to our officers that they are empowered to make traffic decisions based on their best judgment and the particular circumstances presented.


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