Chattanooga, TN – the Tennessee Aquarium has used a grant to upgrade its HVAC systems as a safeguard against the indoor transmission of the virus that causes COVID-19. The aquarium in Chattanooga says it used an $800,000 Tennessee Community CARES Program grant from the state Department of Human Services in part to buy 10 new HVAC units. The equipment has ultraviolet light filters intended to help disinfect the air.

“The science tells us that increased airflow and better filtration greatly reduces the risk of exposure,” Rodney Fuller, the aquarium’s director of facilities and maintenance, said in a news release. “As a nonprofit, we were grateful to receive the funding to add another layer of safety for our guests, staff and volunteers.”

The aquarium reopened to guests in June under new health protocols, including mask requirements for guests older than 12, timed-entry tickets and capacity limits.