SeaWorld May Reinstate Killer Whale

ORLANDO, Fla., March 9 (UPI) — Florida’s SeaWorld said Tuesday it is reviewing safety protocols before allowing the whale that killed a trainer last month to perform before audiences.

Dawn Brancheau, 40, the trainer at SeaWorld Orlando, was killed when Tilikum, the 6-ton Orca, grabbed her by her ponytail and pulled her underwater where she drowned Feb. 24, the Orlando Sentinel reported.

SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment Inc. said it hopes to complete its safety and training review sometime this month.

“It is likely that Tilikum will return to shows, but it’s premature to acknowledge that at this point,” said SeaWorld spokesman Fred Jacobs.

Tilikum, who is twice as large as the next biggest Orca at SeaWorld Orlando, was linked to two other drownings, one in 1991 and the other in 1999, the Sentinel reported.

SeaWorld has resumed killer whale performances but says it will not allow trainers in the water with any orcas until the safety review is done.

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Categorized | Mammals
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