Full article:The February 2010 death of SeaWorld Orlando trainer Dawn Brancheau, who was pulled underwater and killed by the 12,000-pound killer whale Tilikum, triggered the most exhaustive safety review in SeaWorld history and changes that are still being implemented across the company's three namesake marine parks.
And yet, in SeaWorld's profile of Tilikum - an internal document that chronicles the whale's history, his behavioral tendencies and more - the tragedy is summarized in a dozen words. The entry does not even note that Brancheau was killed.
Tilikum's profile is not unusual. The profile for Ulises, a 9,000-pound killer whale at SeaWorld San Diego, notes that trainers were forced to stop swimming with the animal in November 2006 after an "incident" that is never described. The profile for Kyuquot, an 8,000-pound whale at SeaWorld San Antonio, notes that trainers are not allowed in the water with the animal - but, again, does not say why.
To SeaWorld's critics, including some of the company's former killer-whale trainers, the lack of detail in the profiles is evidence that SeaWorld attempts to minimize or mask - both from the public and its trainers - the true extent of the danger facing those who work with the world's largest marine predator.