Dominican Republic rolls out new safety measures after tourist deaths


ANYWHERE. THANKS, JEFF PAUL, SAN JUAN, PUERTO RICO. MELISSA: ROLLING OUT NEW SAFETY MEASURES TO CALM TOURIST FEARS, GOOD LUCK WITH THAT, THE DOMINICAN REPUBLIC RESPONDING TO MOUNTING PRESSURE WITH 14 AMERICANS WHO HAVE DIED SINCE VISITING THE ISLAND SINCE JUNE OF LAST YEAR. JACQUI HEINRICH IN THE NEWSROOM WITH THE LATEST. REPORTER: TOURISM IS WAY DOWN IN REPORTER: TOURISM IS WAY DOWN II REPORTER: TOURISM IS WAY DOWN IN THE D.R. THE HOPE THIS BOOSTS CONFIDENCE. MULTILINGUAL EMERGENCY TOURIST CENTER, DOUBLE INSPECTIONS OF HOTELS, BOOED AND BEVERAGE SUPPLIERS, A MANDATE TO DISPLAY EMERGENCY INFORMATION TO GUESTS UPON CHECK-IN AND GUEST ROOMS. THEY’RE AUDITING DOCTORS AND NURSES AT FACILITIES WITH A WAVE OF PEOPLE WITH DENGUE FEVER IMPROPERLY DIAGNOSED. FOUR DIED AFTER HAVING A DRINK FROM THE HOTEL MINI BAR. THE REPORTS SPURRED A LOT OF MEDIA ATTENTION. AT LEAST 65 REPORTS OF NEAR FATAL INCIDENTS. THEORIES ABOUT ILLICIT ALCOHOL OR MISUSED PESTICIDES AS CAUSE. AUTHORITIES SAY THEY ARE NOT RELATED. TELLING FOX NEWS, ADDITIONAL TIME IS REQUIRED TO COMPLETE TOXICOLOGY TESTS AND AS SUCH THE RESULTS ARE STILL SPENDING. THE WAIT IS HAVING AN IMPACT. AS FOR LAST MONTH, FLIGHTS FOR JULY AND AUGUST WERE 74% LOWER THAN LAST YEAR’S NUMBERS ACCORDING TO TRAVEL RESEARCH FORWARD KEYS. TOURISM MAKES UP NEARLY 1/5 OF THE DOMINICAN ECONOMY IN TOTAL EMPLOYMENT, BUT THE COUNTRY’S VICE CONSUL GENERAL SAYS THE PLANS WERE IN PLACE EVEN BEFORE THE NEGATIVE PUBLICITY.>>SINCE WE’VE BEEN DOING SINCE THE BEGINNING OF THE YEAR, THE PRESIDENT ORDERED AN INTEGRAL TOURISM REVIEW BACK IN JANUARY. THESE MEASURES WE’RE ANNOUNCING COMMUNICATING TO YOU TODAY HAVE BEEN IN THE WORKS SINCE THEN BECAUSE — REPORTER: THE STATE DEPARTMENT SAYS IT IS PLEASED THAT THE DR IS STEPPING UP SAFETY. TOURISM ADVISORY HAS NOT BEEN INCREASED. ONE PROMINENT AMERICAN IS NOT DETERRED.

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