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Downtown Wilmington was busy this Fourth of July

READ MORE: Downtown Wilmington was busy this Fourth of July
Wilmington's Fourth of July fireworks were as popular as ever, but the traffic that followed wasn't much of a hit. Congested roads, a power outage, and plenty of pedestrians made for a hectic night. The city's traffic engineer says this was the busiest July Fourth he has seen in eleven years. Don Bennett was at the controls of the city's traffic lights Friday night. He estimates after the fireworks, there were at least 100 people crossing the streets every couple of minutes. The traffic and police departments worked together in running traffic light patterns to accommodate the crowds. There were a few unforeseen issues. A fallen limb caused the light at Third and Front to go down, so police had to direct traffic around that. That power outage also meant lights on the Isabel Holmes Bridge didn't run according to plan. "We only get one shot of this thing every year, so every year we try something a little bit different to see if we can't improve a little bit," said Bennett. New this year, part of Chestnut Street was blocked off to cars, and people could either exit downtown north or south of Chestnut, depending on where they were parked. Bennett said the number of people moving through downtown Wilmington Friday night is equivalent to how many usually travel there in 24 hours.

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