Friday, October 7, 2022

Some insects have been stirring trouble at Busch Gardens this season

Fans of roller coasters at Busch Gardens might’ve been disappointed the past few weekends as some of the rides were temporarily closed.

Cindy Sarko, director of consumer activation for Busch Gardens and Water Country USA, said that during particularly hot weekends, such as the ones this past month, wasps tend to migrate to the top of tall rides. This poses a safety hazard for riders and employees, so for everyone’s well-being, the rides were closed during the day.

“They’re just up there flying around,” Sarko said. “They’re looking for the highest point and most of our attractions are tall. So before we even open the attraction, we are always checking.”

The wasps have specifically been interfering with the rides Mach Tower, Griffon and Apollo’s Chariot.

Sarko said the park has not received complaints from guests about the rides being closed and employees try to post ample signage both at the park and ride entrance so guests are aware if certain rides are closed.

Every morning, an employee checks each of the rides for safety concerns and Sarko said this fall has just been especially bad with wasps because of the unusually warm weather. Sarko said she can’t recall wasps being an issue in recent years.

“If they’re flying around, we aren’t going to open the ride,” she said. 

Sarko said the park does not spray for the wasps, but instead waits for them to go away on their own, which typically happens in the evening as the temperature goes down. As the Howl-O-Scream season continues and the weather gets cooler, Sarko said hopefully this will not continue to be a problem.

“The safety of our guests, employees and animals is our primary concern,” Sarko added in an email.

Alexa Doironhttp://wydaily.com
Alexa Doiron is a multimedia reporter for WYDaily. She graduated from Roanoke College and is currently working on a master’s degree in English at Virginia Commonwealth University. Alexa was born and raised in Williamsburg and enjoys writing stories about local flair. She began her career in journalism at the Warhill High School newspaper and, eight years later, still loves it. After working as a news editor in Blacksburg, Va., Alexa missed Williamsburg and decided to come back home. In her free time, she enjoys reading Jane Austen and playing with her puppy, Poe. Alexa can be reached at alexa@localvoicemedia.com.

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