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Trainer killed at Seaworld, Orlando

Discussion in 'SeaWorld/Discovery Cove/Aquatica' started by Isafari, Feb 24, 2010.

  1. Isafari
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    Isafari Wild Animal Expert

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    A friend in Florida rang to tell me......many reports available but here is the Orlando Sentinel report...

    HERE

    "A SeaWorld employee died this afternoon during an incident at SeaWorld's Shamu Stadium, an Orange County Sheriff's Office official confirmed.

    SeaWorld, rescue personnel and the Sheriff's Office are not revealing the identity of the victim, although a local TV station is reporting that a female employee was killed after she was grabbed by one of the theme park's whales at the start of a public show.

    Park guest Victoria Biniak told Local 6 that the trainer was a veteran of SeaWorld and had just finished explaining to the audience the show they were about to see.

    At that point, Biniak said, the whale came up from the water and grabbed the woman.

    "He was thrashing her around pretty good. It was violent,'" Biniak told Local 6.

    The whale "took off really fast in the tank, and then he came back, shot up in the air, grabbed the trainer by the waist and started thrashing around, and one of her shoes flew off."

    She said sirens went off and everyone was forced to leave the stadium.

    Guests were evacuated from the area, and the whale show was cancelled. The park is not shut down.

    Orange County Fire Rescue personnel arrived on scene within five minutes of receiving a 911 call for an unknown medical condition just prior to 2 p.m., a spokesman said. The woman was dead when rescue officials arrived.

    The Sheriff's Office is on the scene."
     
  2. Tinkfan
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    Tinkfan Earning my ears

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    My goodness, that is just terrible. Prayers to her poor family
     
  3. BUTTERHEAD1
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    BUTTERHEAD1 Addicted to Mickey

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    How very sad for this woman and her family. I can only imagine the horror on the faces of the children who witnessed this incident.RIP
     
  4. Britchick
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    Britchick Serious Forum Regular

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    how tragic, thoughts are with the family :redroses:
     
  5. daveann
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    daveann Addicted to Mickey

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    very sad :(
     
  6. Slowhand
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    Slowhand Cruise Director Forum Host

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    My heart goes out to that poor lady.
    It only goes to show however that these are wild animals that they deal with and not domesticated pets.
     
  7. Isafari
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    Isafari Wild Animal Expert

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    Apparently it happened during Dine With Shamu.
     
  8. Claire
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    Claire She lost the crayons!

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    A male whale called Tilikum involved apparently. So very, very sad. Thoughts go to the family and friends of the victim.
     
  9. Britchick
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    Britchick Serious Forum Regular

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    just seen the live press conference. 40 year old female fell into a pool and that's when it happened.
     
  10. lozzy
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    lozzy Addicted to Mickey

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    What a horrible thing for anyone to see, My thoughts are with the poor family.
    It's very weird as I have just watch the most amazing program on bbc2 about a killer whale who got lost and made friends with the locals.
     
  11. Tink
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    Tink Cead Mille Failte! Staff Member Administrator

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    Oh good g-d, this is terrible. :(
     
  12. keith
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    keith Camera nut Staff Member Administrator Forum Host

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    a lot of eyewitnesses saying that's not how it happened and that she was definitely grabbed and pulled in :/ :( very sad indeed however it happened
     
  13. Britchick
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    Britchick Serious Forum Regular

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    Even more frightening if true Keith
     
  14. keith
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    keith Camera nut Staff Member Administrator Forum Host

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    Reports now saying that the 40-yr old SeaWorld trainer killed today was Dawn Brancheau. She had 16 years of experience with the orcas.
     
  15. Isafari
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    Isafari Wild Animal Expert

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    Rest in peace Dawn :redroses:

    You were an amazing lady.
     
  16. keith
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    keith Camera nut Staff Member Administrator Forum Host

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    An audience member said a show was just starting when the whale "took off really fast in the tank, and then he came back, shot up in the air, grabbed the trainer by the waist and started thrashing around" Victoria Biniak told WKMG-TV

    Brazilian tourist Joao Lucio DeCosta Sobrinho and his girlfriend were at an underwater viewing area when they suddenly saw a whale with someone in its mouth.

    The trainer was identified as Dawn Brancheau, according to a law enforcement official who spoke on condition of anonymity because he had not been cleared to officially release her name.

    According to a profile of Brancheau in the Orlando Sentinel in 2006, she was one of SeaWorld Orlando's leading trainers. It was apparently a trip to SeaWorld at 9 years old that made her want to pursue this career.

    "I remember walking down the aisle (of Shamu Stadium) and telling my mom, 'This is what I want to do,'" she said in the article.

    Brancheau worked her way into a leadership role at Shamu Stadium during her 12-year career with SeaWorld, starting at the Sea Lion & Otter Stadium before spending the past 10 years working with killer whales, the newspaper said.

    She also addressed the dangers of the job.

    "You can't put yourself in the water unless you trust them and they trust you," Brancheau said.

    From the Orlando Sentinel 24/02/2010
     
  17. Tinker
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    Tinker Earning my ears

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    :yes: I watched World News Tonight on ABC . Witnesses reported the whale jumped up grabbed Dawn by the arm and trashed her while rapidly swimming . Before this witnesses said, the whales seemed aggitated . That must have been a sign of Big Ts fury .
    I got chills in my legs when I saw whom it was . Jim & I just looked at each other with our mouths open , she looks very familiar . I think I have pictures on my desktop of her performing .
    My thoughts & prayers go out to her family, friends & associates . She died doing what she loved most . RIP Dawn !
     
  18. Tinker
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    Tinker Earning my ears

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    Oh Dear G_D , it is her ! She told that story during Believe .
     
  19. Beccaberry
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  20. gwennie81
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    gwennie81 Earning my ears

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    Sea World is EVIL and should NOT EXIST! Why on EARTH would you think of putting a WHALE in a ZOO? If you want to learn about an animal, go on the internet. That's what it's for. Sorry, but I have a real problem with zoos in general. I think they are horrible and should not exist. People claim that "thanks to zoos, many animals have been saved from endangerment." I think that's a bunch of hooey and animals should be left alone in the wild and protected in national parks. If they become extinct, that's just natural selection. I personally think we should conserve as much land (and water) as possible, before it's too late. Urban density, Americans! It's coming!
     

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