Saturday, September 1, 2012

10,000 Campers At Risk From Deadly Virus Epidemic In Yosemite National Park Cabins: Cabins Built In 2009: 2010 State Health Department Warned Yosemite: Poor Cabin Design Created Problem: Where Is The Outrage At Federal Government Park Service Failure?

From The Washington Times, "Up to 10,000 Yosemite visitors at risk of virus" by Associated Press:
Up to 10,000 people who were guests in certain lodging cabins at Yosemite National Park might have been exposed to a deadly mouse-borne virus, park officials confirmed Friday as rangers handled a slew of calls from frightened visitors.
The illness that begins as flu-like symptoms can take six weeks to incubate before rapid acute respiratory and organ failure.

There is no cure, and anyone exhibiting the symptoms must be hospitalized. More than 36 percent of people who contract the rare illness will die from it.
Park officials said the double-walled design of those particular [2009 built] cabins made it easy for mice to nest between the walls. The disease is carried in the feces, urine and saliva of deer mice and other rodents and carried on airborne aerosol particles and dust.
A 2010 report from the state health department warned park officials that rodent inspection efforts should be increased after a visitor to the Tuolumne Meadows area of the park fell ill.

The report revealed 18 percent of mice trapped for testing at various locations around the park were positive for hantavirus.
The 91 insulated, high-end canvas cabins in the century-old Curry Village are new to the park. They were constructed in 2009....
Now imagine how the media, the public, the President and Congress would react if Yosemite were run by a private, for profit company. Not only does the government get away with things that never would be tolerated from a private company, but the private company would probably be forced out of business or into bankruptcy. Instead, the same government agency and the same government bureaucrats get to keep running Yosemite.

Maybe its time to turn the management of campgrounds in National Parks over to private companies?

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