- Associated Press - Wednesday, August 28, 2019

ST. GEORGE, Utah (AP) - Health officials are raising alarm after receiving several reports of people interacting with rabies-carrying bats in southwest Utah.

The Southwest Utah Public Health Department said in a Tuesday news release that most of the cases have occurred in residential neighborhoods. Individuals exposed to the deadly virus have been given preventative vaccinations.

Rabies can spread to people from the saliva of infected animals including bats, foxes, raccoons and skunks.

Officials said most of the rabies cases in southwest Utah occur in bats or animals bitten by bats.

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