Security Tightened at Orlando Theme Parks After Nightclub Shootings

Experts are also expecting attendance to drop at theme parks as people begin to question their security.

ORLANDO — In the wake of Sunday morning’s fatal shootings at a nightclub here, security measures have been amplified at theme parks and tourism experts are expecting a decline in visitors.

Abraham Pizam, dean of the University of Central Florida’s Rosen College of Hospitality Management, told the Orlando Sentinel he expects to see some impact in the number of tourists visiting theme parks such as Walt Disney World.

“It does have an effect,” Pizam said. “People will start thinking twice before booking, you know, attractions or hotels or anything else.”

Back in December, Disney World, Universal Orlando and Seaworld beefed up security with metal detectors after the shootings in San Bernardino, Calif.  On Sunday, many guests at the Magic Kingdom passed through metal detectors and purses and backpacks were checked, according to the Sentinel. In some cases, wallets were unzipped and checked.

“The carnage that occurred is going to elevate security at all parks, arenas, stadiums, theathers. I believe this massacre will be the ‘tipping point'” for venues, Dennis Speigel, president of International Theme Park Services, told the Sentinel. “‘Total security’ is the way we must operate. Metal, dogs, officers, random checks, multiple checks as well at the entrances will happen.”

The shootings left 49 victims dead and 53 more injured. The shooter also died.

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