Newly-released video, which was shot in 2006 and now being used as evidence in an investigation, shows a female orca whale dragging a trainer deep underwater as he struggles for life. The trainer survived. TODAY's Hoda Kotb reports.
In November 2006, trainer Kenneth Peters, 39, was bitten and held underwater several timesby a 7,000-pound killer whale during a show at SeaWorld's San Diego park. The 28-year old female named Kasatka bit Peters' feet and took him to the bottom of the pool for about a minute. Peters suffered a broken foot and puncture wounds in the attack.
The video shows Peters nearly drowning twice as the whale dragged him down to the bottom of the tank by his foot.
The 17-foot-long orca had attacked Peters two other times, in 1993 and 1999.
The video was obtained with a Freedom of Information Act by David Kirby, the author of the recently released book “Near Death at SeaWorld.”
In February 2010, a trainer at Orlando's SeaWorld park was killed after the whale drowned her when she slipped and fell in its tank.
SeaWorld San Diego released the following statement:
"This incident was well documented and thoroughly covered by the news media in 2006. This video clearly shows the trainer’s remarkable composure and the skillful execution of an emergency response plan, both of which helped result in a successful outcome with minor injuries. It should be noted that CalOSHA did not issue any citations to SeaWorld as a result of this incident. SeaWorld’s trainer returned to work shortly after this incident and remains a member of the team at Shamu Stadium to this day."
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