Walt Disney World to close ahead of Hurricane Matthew

Walt Disney World and other Disney attractions in Orlando, Florida, will close on Thursday at 5 p.m. and remain closed through Friday, due to Hurricane Matthew's expected landfall in the state.

Matthew already has swept through parts of the Caribbean, killing more than 100 people. Florida Gov. Rick Scott has called for immediate evacuation in areas expected to be affected by the storm.

Disney was among the last to announce closures, as Universal Orlando Resort said Thursday morning that its theme parks and CityWalk entertainment complex will close at 5 p.m. Thursday and stay closed Friday. SeaWorld in Orlando announced Wednesday that it will close at 2 p.m. Thursday and stay shuttered Friday. Legoland will close at 4 p.m. and will also remain closed through Friday, though the Legoland Hotel will be open to admit arriving guests.

Closures of theme parks are rare, but do happen when the safety of park visitors is in question. Theme parks have closed in 2004 for Hurricane Charley, for example, and in 1999 for Hurricane Floyd, the Orlando Sentinel reports.

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