Student may have exposed thousands to measles virus

San Francisco Bay Area health officials issued a public warning that a college student with measles could have exposed thousands of others when he attended classes and rode public transit.

The officials said Thursday they had confirmed that the student diagnosed last week was not vaccinated and was likely infected with measles during a recent trip to Asia.

The student in his 20s lives in Contra Costa County and attends classes at the University of California, Berkeley.

The measles virus can stay suspended in the air for up to two hours, said Janet Berreman, a health officer for the city of Berkeley said Friday.


“That can lead it to being very contagious,” said Berreman.

Kim LaPean, a university health services spokeswoman, said UC Berkeley health officials have contacted about 100 students who were in class with the infected student. The school also has ordered about 300 doses of vaccine from the state for any students not vaccinated.


Park will cap visitors, keep renting bicycles and rafts

Yosemite National Park will cap visitors at current levels in its most popular areas but will add campsites and maintain bike and raft rentals under a plan announced Friday to save the river that runs through it.

Tourists complained last year when the National Park Service considered getting rid of bicycle and river-raft rentals as part of a court-ordered effort to protect the Merced River, which received congressional “wild and scenic” designation in 1987.


Park officials have long wrestled with preserving the river while maintaining public access to Yosemite Valley, which receives the bulk of the park’s 4 million visitors each year.

The third-most visited national park, Yosemite boasts 1,200 square miles of wilderness. Most visitors end up in the 8-square-mile Yosemite Valley, home to the towering Half Dome and El Capitan granite monoliths and stair-step waterfalls.

The number of visitors to Yosemite Valley will be limited to 18,710 a day and 21,000 visitors a day during peak times. The park planned to ease congestion by adding shuttle buses and improving traffic flow.

– From news service reports

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