100 people infected with likely norovirus; Canadian hotel forced to shut down

The Sheraton Vancouver Airport Hotel was forced to shut down after more than 100 people got sick with what health officials believe to be norovirus over the weekend.

Although the origin of the virus has not been determined, the hotel is undergoing cleaning and disinfection, reported Canadian news outlets CBC and Global News. The hotel shut down Saturday and remained closed as of Wednesday. 

“According to hotel management, more than 100 guests and staff have reported illness, and most have recovered,” Matt Kieltyka, Public Affairs Specialist at Vancouver Coastal Health told USA TODAY.

Norovirus is a highly contagious virus that causes vomiting and diarrhea, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states on its website. Anyone can get infected and sick with norovirus if they have had direct contact with an infected person; consumed contaminated food or water; or putting an unwashed hand in their mouth after touching contaminated surfaces.

“VCH has not yet confirmed the cause of the outbreak, although the symptoms are consistent with norovirus,” said Kieltyka.

A chef from the nearby Hilton Vancouver Airport who had assisted at a 500-person conference at the Sheraton also fell ill with norovirus symptoms, according to Global News. In response, the kitchen and a restaurant at the Hilton were also closed in connection with the outbreak.

USA TODAY has reached out to the Sheraton hotel in Vancouver for comment.

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