Walt Disney World’s Animal Kingdom was found to be in compliance with local orders in Orange County, Florida requiring physical distancing and face masks in public areas.
Employees from the county’s fire, health, and code enforcement departments — dubbed the “Orange County Business Compliance Assistance Team” — have been periodically visiting major tourist attractions like theme parks. Animal Kingdom’s latest inspection took place on November 19, 2020, having previously passed an inspection in September.
All four Disney World theme parks, as well as Disney Springs, have been found to be in compliance with county COVID-19 orders during multiple visits in 2020.
Theme Park Tribune has told by county officials that visits to parks are unannounced, sometimes conducted proactively by the county and other times assigned based on citizen complaints.
One frequent target of those complaints has been the Orlando location of Fun Spot America. As Theme Park Tribune has documented during the pandemic, the park’s CEO has dismissed COVID-19 safety concerns and spread anti-mask misinformation, and the park itself failed both private inspections and four consecutive inspections by the county strike team.
However, the team found Fun Spot to be in compliance with COVID-19 safeguards on its fifth and sixth visits, the most recent being on Dec. 1, 2020.
The Orlando tourist attraction that was most recently found to be out of compliance was Gator Golf Adventure Park on International Drive on Nov. 10, but the mini-golf complex passed a follow-up inspection on Dec. 1.
These COVID-19 inspections represent a change in government oversight for Orlando’s biggest theme parks.
While Fun Spot is subject to visits from Florida’s Bureau of Fair Rides Inspection, under state law, parks with more than 1,000 employees are exempt. Instead, parks run by the likes of Disney, Universal and SeaWorld have to hire their own safety inspectors and report, on a quarterly basis, any injuries or incidents involving guests that require a 24-hour hospital stay.
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