Many United States national parks are still open for business as of March 17, despite the closing of other major venues, events and concert halls. According to the Guardian, many national parks are still full of spring break visitors.
Big Bend national park reportedly had thousands of visitors, as governors and mayors urge those in cities to practice social distancing and stay away from large crowds. Golden Gate national recreation area, the National Mall and the Statue of Liberty are the only parks that have closed in the wake of coronavirus.
As tourists walked around the park visitor center in the Grand Canyon national park, took shuttle buses and filled restaurants, Grand Canyon national park public information officer Lily Daniels told the Guardian, “Our focus is on ensuring park employees are safe.” Other employees requested the Department of Interior close their parks, but many remain open.
Daniels said the park was practicing social distancing per the CDC guidelines but didn’t say how many visitors the park had. While many parks do have large areas and acreage great for social distancing, other spots like shuttle buses, restrooms or visitor centers are often full of people.
Scientists believe that the spread of COVID-19, or coronavirus, started at an exotic animal market in Wuhan, China. You can help stop the incidence of viruses like these by signing this petition to ban the wildlife trade.
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Catch up on our coronavirus coverage in One Green Planet, check out these articles:
- How Coronavirus and the Wildlife Trade are Linked
- Coronavirus Update: How Emerging Diseases are Linked to Factory Farms
- Coronavirus Update: Death Toll Surpasses SARS
- Coronavirus Update: Quarantined Patients Given Turtles for Dinner In Spite of Virus Being Linked to Wild Animal Trade!
- Coronavirus Update: Pangolins Blamed for Spreading Virus
- Chinese Citizens Being Ordered to Dispose of Pets Despite Any Connection with Coronavirus Outbreak
- Coronavirus Update: Your Pets are Not in Danger
- China Acts on Coronavirus and Temporarily Bans Wildlife Trade
- Coronavirus Update: Chinese Citizens Begin Disposing of Pets, Footage of Corpses Lining Street
- Coronavirus Update: Indonesians Called to Stop Eating Bats and Animal Activists Saving Pets in China
- Coronavirus Update: World Global Emissions Have Dropped
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