- Associated Press - Friday, March 7, 2014

ASHEBORO, N.C. (AP) - Trees toppled by a winter storm and the threat of more frozen precipitation have forced the North Carolina Zoo to keep its doors closed through the weekend.

Zoo Director Dr. David Jones said concern for employee safety will prevent staff from removing fallen tree until Sunday. After that, Jones said it will take at least two days, and perhaps longer, to clear service roads, walkways and animal exhibits of the debris.

General Curator Ken Reininger reported no animal-related problems from the weather.

Staffers were told to leave work by 2 p.m. Friday due to dangerous conditions in the park and the potential for additional tree damage over the next day.

In January, bitter cold closed the zoo for four days. Last month, a snowstorm closed the zoo for six days.

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