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600 Florida National Guard troops head to Washington, D.C. for President-elect Biden's inauguration

Buses depart Orlando Friday morning
Posted at 12:38 PM, Jan 15, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-15 12:40:13-05

ORLANDO, Fla. — A National Guard unit from Florida will be among the estimated 21,000 troops in Washington, D.C. for Inauguration Day next week.

Nearly 600 members of the Second Battalion 124th Infantry Regiment packed up their bags and departed Orlando before sunrise Friday morning.

Video provided by the unit showed servicemembers loading up their gear into three buses as they departed the Sunshine State for the nation's capital.

"What's slightly different is we're sending twice as many as we normally do in request from D.C. National Guard," Lt. Col. Adam Curry told WPTV Thursday while on the road just north of the Georgia border.

Washington, D.C. is on heightened alert for President-elect Joe Biden's Wednesday inauguration following the deadly riot Jan. 6 at the U.S. Capitol.

There were already an estimated 7,000 members of the National Guard in Washington by Thursday. Some of those troops slept inside the U.S. Capitol this week to protect federal lawmakers on the day of President Trump's second impeachment.

Because of the ongoing security risk of violent protests and attacks from domestic groups, there has been some discussion about moving the traditionally outdoor inauguration ceremony to an indoor venue.

However, Biden's inauguration is still scheduled to take place Wednesday on the west front of the U.S. Capitol.