Video: Freak norovirus outbreak spreads across U.S.

updated 1/19/2007 8:42:13 PM ET 2007-01-20T01:42:13

A Hilton hotel outside Washington has been closed for a top-to-bottom scrubbing after 15 employees and more than 100 guests were sickened by the highly contagious norovirus, a hotel spokesman said Friday.

Hotel officials first heard reports of sick guests Wednesday and contacted Fairfax County health authorities, said Jim Cree, the director of sales and marketing at the hotel near Dulles International Airport. Officials confirmed it was norovirus Thursday night, he said.

“Yesterday we stopped taking reservations,” Cree said. “Today we’re actually relocating guests, and we’ve relocated all of our events to other hotels.”

Outbreaks of norovirus, which causes vomiting and diarrhea, are common on cruise ships and in places like hotels, prisons and nursing homes.

Cree said the hotel would reopen Tuesday at noon.

Meanwhile, Hilton Hotels Corp. has set up a hot line for  anybody who stayed at the Dulles hotel this week: 800-328-7761.

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