Eleven new cases of norovirus reported at Olympics, upping total to 139

Nathan Fenno, Los Angeles Times on

Published in Olympics

PYEONGCHANG, South Korea -- The norovirus outbreak among staff and volunteers at the Pyeongchang Olympics appears to be easing.

Eleven new cases were diagnosed Friday, according to organizers, bringing the week's total to 139.

The outbreak had previously grown by dozens of cases each day.

Seven of the 11 new cases are security staff, the group hit hardest by the highly contagious disease.

Organizers have distributed more than 15,000 bottles of hand sanitizer to combat the outbreak, though the U.S. Centers for Disease control says using alcohol-based products isn't a substitute for hand washing to prevent the disease's spread.

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Local officials are also increasing inspections of accommodations and restaurants near venues for the Games and encouraging "smile greetings instead of handshakes."

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