National Parks Opening in Stages Though Some Experts Express Concern

Some experts say it's "premature" to open up America's wilderness.

National Parks Opening in Stages Though Some Experts Express Concern
AP / Lynne Sladky

The Trump administration has pressed the National Park Service to begin reopening its parks as summer arrives — but some are still concerned about safety.

National parks will welcome back guests in stages. The Everglades has opened some roads and a store while keeping other buildings and pathways closed. The Associated Press reported that boats were lined up waiting for the Florida park ahead of its 7 AM restart.

President Trump originally wanted to reopen national parks by Earth Day on April 22nd. That didn't happen and some health experts still say it's still premature to open up America's public lands.

Susan Michaels-Strasser, a Columbia University epidemiology professor, told The Hill: “We’re still deep in the midst of a pandemic ... A lot of pieces of the puzzle have to come together to give the public health systems the data needed to know if it’s getting worse or if it’s getting better or staying the same, and right now those systems are not in place,”

Officials say they are working with local authorities to ensure safety though many of the rules will be self-policed. The superintendent of Yellowstone National Park told E and E News: "The Park Service is not going to be the social distancing police."