Home Videos Photos

Killer Whale Kills SeaWorld Trainer

| Filed under: R.I.P.Sad Sad

This is so unfortunate, especially because despite their name, they're generally not a threat to humans.

A trainer at the SeaWorld in Orlando, FL was killed by an Orca Whale today.

Thankfully, the incident was not during a performance.

Our thoughts are with the friends and family of those involved.

UPDATE: The Los Angeles Times is providing more details about the incident, including eye witness accounts from park guests. Apparently, the accident DID happen in front of an audience.

According to the source, an unidentified female employee was grabbed by one of the whales at the start of a show.

Theme park guest Victoria Biniak said the whale came up from the water and grabbed the woman and began "thrashing her around pretty good."

She described the scene as terribly "violent" as 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."

That was when the audience was immediately evacuated and the rest of the show was cancelled.

The poor woman! Such a terrible tragedy!

Celebs Who Died Under Bizarre Circumstances!
10 Reality TV Couples Broken Up By The Spotlight!
Remembering Cory Monteith One Year After His Death
Actors Who Died Way Too Young!
Maya Angelou's Greatest Quotes
Peaches Geldof: A Look Back At A Young Life

155 comments to “Killer Whale Kills SeaWorld Trainer”

More comments: [1] 2 »



  1. 1

    maybe whales shouldn't be held captive…



  2. 2

    They're called KILLER WHALES people! Where's the Tiger show? …Oh yeah…

    Free Willie! All of them.



  3. 3

    Look up KILLER WHALES on Wikipedia Mario!



  4. 4

    First and foremost, I am terribly sorry for the loss of the trainer. This was not her fault….

    Places like SeaWorld are torture chambers for large marine mammals like whales and dolphins. Frankly, I'm surprised this does not happen most often. These creatures are not meant to be kept in tiny pools to jump around for our amusement.

    SeaWorld, and places like this, should be shut down and the whales should be rehabilitated and set free.



  5. 5

    What!? No gory video to exploit!? what is the web coming to!?



  6. 6

    whales belong in the ocean. not in a tank for people to look at. so stupid. they're called KILLER WHALES.



  7. 7

    That killer whale went killer whale on her. I am surprised this doesn't happen more often. Hopefully, they let the Japanese tourists harpoon it for food afterwards.



  8. 8

    Poor lady thats so sad…
    *
    WILD ANIMALS BELONG IN THE WILD!
    *
    SEA WORLD IS EVIL.



  9. 9

    this is why we shouldn't have wild animals as entertainment.

  10. Dawo says – reply to this


    10

    OMG :(



  11. 11

    A horrible tragedy!



  12. 12

    that's awful…



  13. 13

    omg, horrible! hopefully they dont kill the whale now. its an animal! they do stuff like this!



  14. 14

    This is just sad. Something must have made the whale act out, because they don't just attack humans. This is terribly sad! :(



  15. 15

    What a surprise. Especially with a name like K I L L E R whale. This creature is not meant to be kept in a tank, and its only a matter of time before they let their displeasure be known.



  16. 16

    Killer Whales can actually be VERY violent. Ever seen them hunt seals? Anyway, these animals should not be kept locked up in aquariums or zoos. They are wild and belong in their natural habitat. People shouldn't be surprised when they attack and kill humans. They are not domesticated cats or dogs. They are big and dangerous. I hope they don't destroy the whale. It wasn't its fault. He was acting on instinct.



  17. 17

    Same thing happened at Sea World San diego a few years back. Plus if you look up Shamu Show Incident Nov 15 2006 (that is the title) on YouTube, you'll see what happened to a trainer when a whale decided to take him on an "unauthorized" swim.



  18. 18

    They are called KILLER whales for a reason. They're not some kind of cuddly creature. Just take a look at any video of while killer whales. They're mean sob's that earn their name.



  19. 19

    Don't put wild animals in tanks.
    Enough said.

  20. FS says – reply to this


    20

    That's what you get when you keep a beautiful mammal that should be in the ocean, in captivity. It's too bad that this happened but I feel more sorry for the whale.



  21. 21

    Re: BooBoo Kitty
    100% AGREED!!!!!



  22. 22

    At least she died doing what she loved!!

  23. T & B says – reply to this


    23

    This is not surprising. SeaWorld and all they stand for disgust me. Perhaps the incident will shed light on the tragedies that occur to the whales everyday.



  24. 24

    Re: BooBoo Kitty
    Well said, BooBoo Kitty



  25. 25

    These animals belong in the ocean, not entertaining fat people in a park! I hope they don't kill that whale, this isn't his/her fault.



  26. 26

    NO IT IS NOT A TRADEDY AT ALL. It was a perfectly avoidable incident involving a whale, doing what whales do, and stupid humans who forget that for the sake of dollars. Whales do not belong in pools "jumping" for thier keep. As a person who grew up watching those very whales off the west coast of B.C. in Canada, I feel horribly sad at the thought of that kind of existance for them. Same with Zoos, shut them all down.



  27. 27

    So sad!



  28. 28

    Ack!!! Release the whales!!! That's some creepy ass shit!



  29. 29

    quid pro quo



  30. 30

    I'm shocked - SHOCKED, I tell you! - that a wild animal would, you know, act like a wild animal.



  31. 31

    Whales do not exist for our own personal amusement, it is in the whale's nature to attack. It's foolish to think that these animals should be "trained" to put on shows for revenue. Children should not be shown animals in this environment anyways.



  32. 32

    Ahh, anything for the almighty dollar!



  33. 33

    Re: BooBoo Kitty

    agreed.

    I also refuse to go to the circus… i can stand zoos and aquariums, but circuses and sea worlds disgust me…



  34. 34

    Unlike most of you tree hugging, PETA loving morons, I have no issue with animals being held in captivity, how else can people view these creatures and learn more about them. While this women who was killed is tragic let's not forget that these animals are exactly that…animals and why is everyone so surprised when they act like animals? Remember Sigfreid and Roy, the tiger was being a tiger just like the Orca was being an Orca.



  35. 35

    Ok, i am going to come off as a massive dork, but! i went to sea world back in '98 i believe. Orlando Sea World had recently recieved a killer whale from Vancouver that had killed a trainer there, the trainer fell and the whale took her to the bottom of the pool and thought she was a toy and drowned her. The whale was taken to Orlando Sea World and they were not preforming in the water with that whale. Well I went recently (ie last year) and i asked one of the trainers, if the whale was still there and sure enough it is! So i am wondeirng if it is the same whale that killed this recent trainer. I hope that helps in some way. They are wild animals and you never know when they will snap



  36. 36

    that's really sad. I hope they dont kill the whale



  37. 37

    Terrible for the girl who died and her family, but those animals shouldn't be kept like that. They don't want to work or entertain they just want to be what they are, wild animals.



  38. 38

    This is sad but not surprising. I feel more sad for the animals that are stuck in swimming pools doing tricks for tourists when they should be in their natural habitat. It is so frustrating that people just don't get it!!



  39. 39

    Yeah, captivity is such torture, their life span is cut into about a third of their wild life span and things like the dorsal fin curling only happen in captivity, screwing with these things is not cool.



  40. 40

    killer whales are normally gentle animals, intelligent animals, but they have feelings too, bad days, good days. between the two articles, many different stories. the orange county sheriff says the trainer fell in. the story says no one was there. then she was by a window and 2 whales charged, then it is just the one. Now it says a show was beginning. On the news, it says there was an audience. It comes down to a 130 lb human vs a 6 ton animal. If this animal was just playing, it does not know its own strength against a human. It is time to let these animals go, make sure the japanese do not kill them off. Either that or get big enough tanks for them. 6 tons, they need at least, a lake.



  41. 41

    they shouldnt be in pens doing tricks to amuse humans

    i hope they kill all the trainers



  42. 42

    Re: Horndog – umm…go to the wild where they live?



  43. 43

    lol did everyone see perez on HBO's BIG LOVE? He was selling birds in mexico, to bad he got shot by the greens!

  44. Shark says – reply to this


    44

    i feel sorry for the whale. thats it. i am supposed to feel bad for a person when they take wild animals out of their natural habitat and stick them in a tiny aquarium as a circus event?
    i dont think so.



  45. 45

    Terribly sad for the victim and her family. Sadly, this will probably add to the sensational allure of a seeing a "dangerous, exciting KILLER WHALE" [bright lights!] for people selling Sea World tickets, when what really happened was a depressed, frustrated wild animal lashed out with uncharacteristic aggressiveness in response to a lifetime of capitvity and exploitation by humans. Zoos may teach people about animals, but crap like Sea World and circuses just exploit animals for "shows."



  46. 46

    Its ALL fun and games UNTIL someone gets eaten!!



  47. 47

    "killer whales" arent actually whales……they're called that because they're known to attack whales.

  48. jham says – reply to this


    48

    It's being reported that the whale in question "Tillikum" has killed two other people. Another trainer in 1991 and a man in 1999 who hid and then got into the tank with Tillikum after the park closed and was found dead the next morning.

    According to CNN, the VP of SeaWorld said of Tillikum in 1999: "We do not consider this a safe animal for our own trainers to interact with in the water . . . He has had a history before coming to SeaWorld Orlando."

    I wonder why the kept the whale around? I wonder why they did not put the animal to sleep or release him into the wild when they knew he was dangerous to humans?

  49. jham says – reply to this


    49

    Re: lancecappy – I believe it is.



  50. 50

    Whales like any other animal should be admired in it's natural habitat not jumping through hoops for our amusement.



  51. 51

    Re: dave_o – hope they kill all the trainers? you're a freaking idot.



  52. 52

    They are WILD ANIMALS and they belong in the wild, not getting treated as toys by weirdos like the Sea World freaks

  53. missB says – reply to this


    53

    Re: Short Fuse – thank you you said it perfectly

  54. jham says – reply to this


    54

    Re: Shark – I am passionately against keeping animals in captivity, however, I would never go so far as to place animal life above human life. The loss of human life is tragic. Please be considerate to her family, friends and loved ones in case any happen to read this blog.



  55. 55

    It is a tragedy- but it's also a tragedy that we capture and use wild animals to gawk at and make money for traffikers.



  56. 56

    what is it going to take for the whale and dolphin industry to give up crushing the lives of these mammals and just stop this disgusting circus they set up all over the world. I urge everyone to watch 'The Cove' it is a massive insight to what goes on in japan undercover to capture the orca's and dolphins that then go on to live such horrible and closeted lives in personal tanks. these animals have to be fed chemicals and medicine everyday to stop their blisters and ulcers breaking out in their mouths and body which they get from being so depressed. these animals are so intelligent if not more intelligent than humans, so why do we think it is right to treat them with such disrespect. you do not learn anything from seeing these creatures in a zoo or seaworld, go and pick up any of the david attenborough DVD's if you want to learn something about the natural world. seaworld and the animals within the parks are kept in nothing but natural conditions.

    the trainer deserved it. stupid idiots!!!



  57. 57

    I live an hour away from Orlando this is sad but they're wild animals you can't trust them ive heard they think the whale was playing…I hope they don't kill the whale cuz it's not the whales fault he's wild he can't help it they will never be trained fully and trustworthy



  58. 58

    Re: BooBoo Kitty

    So how is it not the trainers 'fault' if she chooses to work for SeaWorld which you describe as a 'torture chamber' for marine animals???? She's as much to blame as the machine. Those places make me sick.



  59. 59

    This may seem harsh… But the lady got was coming and I do not feel sorry for her. People need to remember that these are WILD animals. No amount of training is going to keep an animal from attacking. Whales don't belong in swimming pools doing tricks for people, they should be in the ocean. Period.



  60. 60

    I am sure the trainers are well aware of the risks. Very sad for the trainer and her family. Orcas belong in the ocean, that is only tank big enough for them. Imagine begin forecefully cooped up in your bedroom every day of your life, and being forced to do things no matter how you might be feeling. It would be a double tragedy if Sea World eliminates that poor creature. I am surprised more animals don't go apeshit. My sympathies weigh heavily for the animals.

  61. jham says – reply to this


    61

    Re: justfiona – The trainer did NOT deserve to die. Again, please be careful with your words. You can be against the captivity of animals and still be sensitive to the loss of human life. Come on. Try a little harder to be an adult.



  62. 62

    i actually live near orlando, and heard an eyewitness account….supposedly the trainer who was one of the best was feeding and massaging the whale accidentaly got her hair caught in the teeth, and the whale slowly turned over and took her under, not an intentional attack at all, very unfortunate



  63. 63

    Re: dave_o – this is exactly what needs to happen, no he is not an idiot.



  64. 64

    ITS CALLED AN ORCA NOT A KILLER WHALE!!!!!!!!!!!! Dont people watch Free Willy anymore!!!



  65. 65

    Amazeballs!! Video please



  66. 66

    Re: jham – i am seriously doubting the fact that the trainer did not know the risks of her 'job' before she undertook it. it does not take a genius to figure out wether captivity is right or wrong, there is no defence against keeping animals under this condition. the death of this trainer will mean nothing not have any effect on the industry. so is it not that that we should be questioning? the fact that a HUMAN LIFE is placed so far below profit?

    maybe be an adult and think about what the bigger situation is? the trainer helped this disgusting trade therefore made her fate. Karma seems to be the only thing we can rely on in this world.



  67. 67

    Thats what happens when you enslave an animal. They get PISSED. Sorry bout the lady, cant blame the whale! This is a brutal industry, with massive death of sea life in Japan for "shows" like this. SHOULD BE BANNED!!



  68. 68

    Maybe any animal should not be held captive.
    Watch the academy nominated, THE COVE to gain a better understanding.
    When we buy tickets to zoos, circuses, marine parks, etc. we support an oppressive industry.



  69. 69

    Maybe they're a littl e pissed off at being in a small tank their whole life.



  70. 70

    Re: Horndog – Peta MORONS excuse me but the ONLY MORON I see here is you ! Did you know that they also have "Whale Watching Tours" do you know what that is ? People all get on a boat , ride out to sea and watch the ANIMALS in their natural habitat doing what they do BEST ! THERE IS NO NEED TO PUT THESE ANIMALS INCAPITIVT! IT IS NOT OUR FAULT OR THAT POOR ANIMALS FAULT THAT YOU ARE TO STUPID TO LOOK FOR THESE ANIMALS IN THEIR NATURAL HABITAT'S NOR ARE YOU RESOURCEFUL TO LOOK INTO it ! That is what is WRONG with this Country anymore and WHY WE ARE SO DAMN LAZY we expect to SIT ON OUR FAT ASSES and HAVE EVERYTHING HANDED TO US OR DELIVERED! GET OFF YOUR ASSES AND GO SEE THE WORLD IT ISN'T HARD TO FIND THESE ANIMALS AND MANY OTHER KIND! YOU DON'T NEED TO CAGE THEM IT SHORTENS THEIR LIFE AND DOES MAJOR MENTAL DAMAGE WHY DO YOU THINK WHEN A Killer whale IS CAPTURED HIS TOP FIN (like sharks) FOLDS OVER! THEY ARE DEPRESSED AND NOT EVEN THEMSELVES ANYMORE ITS A DAMN SHAME! REALLY IS!



  71. 71

    *CAPTIVITY WHOOPS! (heehe)



  72. 72

    the correct name is orca, not killer whales. they are not whales at all but a type of porpoise. they are also wild animals that cannot be domesticated and to lock them up for entertainment is cruel and just ignorant. the trainer knew the risks and it's her own damned fault for putting herself in that situation. just ask yourself how many orcas have died a much more violent death in the name of man's selfishness?



  73. 73

    Re: Horndog – um…we have learned to study animals in their own habit. how much can you learn from a caged animal? how many laps they can do in an hour? or maybe how quickly they learn 5:00 is feeding time? to view something locked up in order to learn and study it is ridiculous. ever seen the discovery channel?



  74. 74

    Re: Shark – well said.



  75. 75

    Re: jham – why shouldn't we put an animal's life on the same level as a human's? my dog would certainly give his life for me without question and i would do the same for him. all life is sacred.

    this animal was captured by humans and held in bondage. the captors and trainers bring the danger on themselves. hmmmm……



  76. 76

    Re: jham – no one "deserves" to die, but she did bring it on herself. to be an adult means accepting responsibility for making mistakes - even fatal ones.



  77. 77

    Re: SammiDe – woo-hoo! give em hell!



  78. 78

    oh my gosh this was my girlfriends friends wife =( she was supposed to stay with them for a few days soon when she went to visit florida



  79. 79

    It's sad that woman got killed by that whale today. But should they be holding wild animals captive like that?



  80. 80

    from what i heard,that whale caused two other deaths so they may end up putting it to death



  81. 81

    good for the whale, fuck all these arseholes that work with captive whales



  82. 82

    Re: SammiDe – You are so right. It even happens in Australia too, trust me. Good rant though, I agree wholeheartedly :)

  83. jham says – reply to this


    83

    Re: justfiona – Careful - your hatred is showing. The trainer - probably a recent grad of some SoCal school w/ a degree in Marine Biology - is not responsible for the system of captivating animals. She did not deserve to die and that is not the way Karma works. If it was it, would have been the CEO of SeaWorld on that platform - or maybe the entire audience. Or maybe every person who ever went to SeaWorld - as they are the ones directly funding the program. I'm sure she believed she was helping study these animals for the betterment of the species. Regardless, it is disgraceful to use such awful words about a recently deceased person you never knew.
    Furthermore, I guarantee you SeaWorld will be affected by this. Two other people died by this whale, one a trainer, and SeaWorld knew about it. SeaWorld's own VP went on record and said the animal was not safe to be around humans. There will be a HUGE and well publicized lawsuit. And if the lawsuit ends up bankrupting every SeaWorld in existence, I will be thrilled.

  84. jham says – reply to this


    84

    Re: Msmireyes – I do not believe we should put an animal's life on the same level as a human's. That does not mean animals should not be treated with the utmost respect and love. It means human life should not be sacrificed for animal life. Fortunately, our culture has evolved to the extent that humans no longer need animals to survive. Part of loving something is respecting its nature. If your dog were starving, it would eat you. If you were starving, you would eat it. Luckily, neither of you are, so you can enjoy your mutual friendship. But your dog's love is not unconditional, stop feeding him and see what happens.



  85. 85

    Re: jham – excuse me? she knew the job description when she took as she did the risks. she's just as cruel as the owner of seaworld. perhaps even more so as her hands actually got dirty. she witnessed the bondage daily.



  86. 86

    Humans have no right to remove wild animals from their natural habitat. Anyone who truly loves animals would never go to Sea World or any other horror show that exploits animals for money . Sad for the trainer I suppose, but sometimes the best lessons are the hardest to learn.



  87. 87

    Re: justfiona – "Karma seems to be the only thing we can rely on in this world"

    there is no such thing as karma you pathetic superstitious moron



  88. 88

    Re: jham – apples and oranges. i was talking about defending you are talking survival. yes, if i allowed my dog to starve he would most definitely eat me. so be it - it is what an animal would do and i understand that wholeheartedly. it would be a situation i created and would accept the consequences. the orca did what he had to do. the trainer and seaworld created the situation and are paying the very high consequences.



  89. 89

    may she rip….certain animals are not meant to be held captive to be trained for shows and do tricks how many times have we seen elephants go on rampages

  90. Jaxy says – reply to this


    90

    Re: Tweetheartkitty22 – Just like that australian croc hunter right?



  91. 91

    ha ha! i do not pity that lady one bit, GO WATCH DOLPHINS COVE and u'll know why!



  92. 92

    Re: SammiDe
    *
    JUST SO YOU KNOW PETA IS THE NEW ACORN AT FAUX NEWS
    *
    FAUX NEWS IS AT WAR WITH PETA!
    *
    Horndog is a fox fan



  93. 93

    Re: uwbeerman – yeah. your pathetically sick.



  94. 94

    really now…can you blame the whale? So ridiculous keeping a whale in a little tank. I'm surprised it doesn;t happen more often.

  95. jham says – reply to this


    95

    Re: Msmireyes – I suppose this is where we fundamentally disagree. I do not hold individual employees responsible for the "system" created by the corporate owners or even society for that matter. I'm sure WalMart kills more animals than SeaWorld ever did (selling hunting equip/suburban sprawl - ruining habitats) but I don't believe a worker at WalMart "deserves" to die. You are suggesting that this person "deserved" to die for contributing in part (you say large part/i say small part) to the captivity of an animal. That is saying that a human's life is beneath that of the animal - after all, the animal is still alive. Does danger appear to be a fairly obvious consequence of engaging with wild, yet captive animals who no longer fear humans and are used to regular feeding? Of course it does. I don't disagree. I am suggesting that people afford a little decency not to spew hatred toward a young woman who has passed. She didn't "deserve" it. Sometimes people use "Animal Love" as a mask for "Human Hate."



  96. 96

    Re: badnfluenz
    YOU MAKE A FAIR POINT!



  97. 97

    Well (eyebrows raised!) when you kidnap an animal that has a brain that's LARGER THEN OURS (4 lobes vs. 3 and way BIGGER!!!!!!!!!!) it's undoubtedly going to eventually RETALIATE for being held in a fricking SWIMMING POOL it's whole life while it's pod roams the planet living their LIVES they got stolen from them! They did an experiment where activists were able to get an agreement to go in after hours and play a recording of Shamu's family for Shamus (they keep track of which family all the kidnapped orca's come from) and Shamu lifted his head and started crying out!!!! They had NEVER seen him do this before in captivity!!!!!! :*( totally made me cry that he heard his family and wanted them to come to him….rescue him!!! Sea World if FUCKING EVIL! They claim to "rescue" dolphins and killer whales from the Japanese that pull them out of the water in their dry nets to kill them…but Sea World pays BIG BUCKS to keep the Japanese supplying them with traumatized victims that have seen their whole family get slaughter!!! CORRUPT!!!!



  98. 98

    Its just its way of saying "PUT ME BACK IN THE FUCKIN OCEAN!".

  99. jham says – reply to this


    99

    Re: JackWad – That's so sad! I hope they get the pants sued off of them!



  100. 100

    Re: jham – TOTALLY!!!! it's big big corporate business, turning these sentient creatures just as smart as us but lacking THUMBS, LEGS so therefore they're slaves..and forcing them into species slavery! I saw a cable access show that depicted how they kidnap killer whales from their pod and it was the saddest fricking thing i've EVER seen!!!! It would be like aliens taking you away in front of your whole horried family….

More comments: [1] 2 »