Safari Park visitor may have been exposed to rabies, county says

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SAN PASQUAL VALLEY, Calif. — At least one person may have been exposed to rabies while visiting the San Diego Zoo Safari Park on Sunday, county health officials said.

Around 11:30 a.m., a bat was seen flying around a female guest at the Mombasa Cooker at Nairobi Village, according to the County of San Diego Health and Human Services Agency. A park employee collected the bat and submitted it to the county to be tested for rabies. The bat, which did not belong to the park’s collection animals, tested positive for the virus.

“We are concerned about the health of this woman and any park patrons who were in direct contact with the bat,” said Eric McDonald, M.D., M.P.H., medical director of the County Epidemiology and Immunization Services branch. “We want to make sure they were not potentially exposed to this deadly disease.”

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