Busch Gardens reopens to guests as TECO works to restore outage caused by squirrel

TAMPA, Fla. -- A squirrel is responsible for the power outage that brought Busch Gardens to a standstill for hours Saturday.

Busch Gardens Tampa Bay reopened its gates about 1:00 p.m. Saturday to guests while TECO crews worked to restore power to the entire park, Busch Gardens Tampa Bay spokeswoman Karen Varga-Sinka said.

Power was fully restored to the park by 2:30 p.m. 

The sprawling, Safari-themed attraction lost power shortly after 10:00 a.m. Saturday, delaying some guests who had arrived from entering the park.

It appears a squirrel got into a substation breaker, causing the power outage, TECO spokeswoman Sylvia Vega said.

Busch Gardens Tampa Bay released the following statement:

"The park is open to guests, we have many options including two restaurants, animal habitats and our award winning ice show for people to enjoy at this time. Ambassadors are still working with TECO to get the effect(ed) areas up and running as soon as possible. Anyone who needs options for refunds can go to a ticket window if they are in the park or email BGA.guestinformation@seaworld.com."

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