Skip to Content

Stay Informed

Duty to Warn Olympic Travelers about Zika?

Attorney: Laurie E. Sherwood | Published 7.28.16

With the Olympics just a week away, Walsworth partner Laurie Sherwood wrote an article for the San Francisco Daily Journal discussing whether travel providers still have a duty to warn of the risk from Zika?

As has been reported in the news, a number of athletes are foregoing this year’s Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro due to concerns regarding the Zika virus. Golfers Jason Day, Jordan Spieth, Rory McIlroy, and Dustin Johnson, cyclist Tejay van Garderen, and basketball player Stephan Curry are among those declining to participate, citing Zika as a factor in their decisions. The CDC and WHO, however, have both determined that the global risk presented by Zika in light of the games is low.

According to Sherwood, “the critical question is whether it is foreseeable that a traveler to Rio could become infected with the Zika virus. The answer is — yes. Is this a risk that is also so clearly obvious and apparent that travelers would be expected to already know about it? If the answer to the latter question is likewise in the affirmative, then travel providers may not necessarily owe a duty to warn their customers of the risk of contracting Zika.”

Go to Daily Journal to read the full article. (Subscription required).