One person bit by rabid bat on UW campus, others likely exposed

File photo from King County Public Health

SEATTLE - Seattle King County Public Health issuing a warning after a rabid bat was found near Husky Stadium on the University of Washington campus over the weekend.

Health officials said the bat was discovered on Saturday afternoon near Union Bay, behind the stadium and bit at least one person on the hand. That person then sought help at the Lambda Chi Alpha fraternity.

“He got bitten in the hand and he came back, he brought the bat back,” said Mason Fagan, one of the fraternity brothers who lives with the man who was bitten. “This bat flew up next to them, and he was going to move the bat or something, and the bat just latched on and started biting his hand."

Test results from the State Public Health Lab released Monday showed the bat tested positive for rabies.

The health department said several people were likely exposed to the rabid bat while attempting to help the man remove the animal from his hand. Anyone who may have had contact with the bat or was at the fraternity or near the water docks by Husky Stadium should seek medical care immediately.

According to King County Public Health, rabies is dangerous and potentially life-threatening, but can be treatable if caught early.

Rabies is a viral disease of the central nervous system that is almost always fatal once symptoms begin. The virus is found in the saliva of an animal with rabies and is usually transmitted by a bite or scratch.

Anyone with questions can contact King County Public Health at 206-296-4774.

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