Local theme parks in Orlando, Florida, are exercising caution in the midst of the Zika virus’ spread throughout the state.
Universal Florida, Walt Disney World and Sea World are all handing out bottles of free insect repellent to visitors. Repellent is also being issued by Aquatica Orlando, Discovery Cove, Busch Gardens in Tampa Bay and Adventure Island in Tampa, reported News 13.
Locally transmitted cases of Zika were reported in Miami-Dade County and, most recently, there was another report in the Tampa Bay area. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that as of Aug. 24, Florida reported 471 cases of travel-related cases and 29 cases were from local transmission.
Park representatives issued a statement saying that “an abundance of caution” was being exercised throughout the parks.
“We are accelerating preventative efforts throughout our property, including providing complimentary insect repellent to our Guests along with helpful guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention,” vice president of communications for Walt Disney World Resort, Jacquee Wahler, told News 13. “We have an extensive mosquito-prevention and monitoring program in place, and we continue to work closely with local, state and federal experts on the topic.”
The parks have all placed signage on park grounds explaining where visitors can pick up repellant. Aerosol cans will also be available in the rooms at the parks’ resorts.
Gizmodo reported that all of the signs stated the parks were doing everything to assist with mosquito prevention without directly mentioning the Zika virus.
The parks’ decision to actively prevent the spread of mosquitos in its parks in Orlando and Tampa come after Florida Gov. Rick Scott’s press conference last week where he asked businesses to help do their part to combat further spread of the virus.