Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Killer Whale trainer, Dawn Brancheau killed at Shamu Stadium

The Orca (killer whale) named Tilikum, weighs approximately 12,000 pounds and has been indicated in two prior deaths. A press conference was held today at 4:30 p.m. led by the Orange County Sheriff’s Department. During the press conference it was stated that there was no foul play involved. They also said that it appeared the trainer, Dawn Brancheau, slipped and fell into the tank. This contradicts witness accounts that said they watched as the killer whale leaped out of the water, grabbed her, and pulled her under the water drowning her in the tank.

During the press conference, Sea World Orlando President Dan Brown spoke and said, “I must emphasize this is an extremely difficult time for the Sea World Parks and our team members. Nothing is more important than the safety of our employees, guests and the animals entrusted in our care. We have never in the history of our park experienced an incident like this, and all of our standard operating procedure will come under review.”
Tilikum was involved with the deaths of two individuals prior to Wednesday’s attack and was considered so dangerous, no one was allowed in the tank with the killer whale.