Yosemite National Park closed indefinitely amid coronavirus concerns

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Visitors look out at Yosemite National Park from Glacier Point on July 21, 2014 in Yosemite National Park. (Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

Visitors look out at Yosemite National Park from Glacier Point on July 21, 2014 in Yosemite National Park. (Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

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Yosemite National Park has closed amid continuing concerns over the spread of coronavirus, National Park Service officials announced Friday.

The indefinite closure was effective as of 3 p.m. Friday and will be enforced 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

“There will be no access permitted to Yosemite National Park,” officials said in a news release.

The closure comes a day after Gov. Gavin Newsom ordered all of California’s nearly 40 million residents to stay at home to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

“The health and safety of our visitors, employees, volunteers, and partners at Yosemite National Park is our number one priority,” officials said. “The National Park Service is working with the federal, state, and local authorities to closely monitor the novel coronavirus situation.”

Updates about NPS operations during the outbreak will be posted on the agency’s website, and updates about Yosemite operations will be available on the park’s website and social media pages.

Yosemite was partially closed in July 2018 when the nearby Ferguson Fire created smoky conditions at the park.

California’s Joshua Tree and Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks remain open, but some areas, such as park contact stations and visitor centers, are closed as safety precautions.

Though some national parks have closed during the outbreak, agency-wide, NPS is “modifying operations” at facilities and monitoring conditions, officials said.

“Park superintendents are empowered to modify their operations, including closing facilities and cancelling programs, to address the spread of the coronavirus,” the park service said earlier this week.

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