4-year-old male Winston, then known as Ramu, attacked trainer Doug Cartlidge. There was on official report which was sent to SeaWorld and all other facilities holding orca detailing the attack. SeaWorld have video of Ramu coming out of the water and trying to pull Doug Cartlidge from the training platform. It was part of the video showing all the hand signals before he went over there. Winston also nearly had HRH Prince of Wales when he was swimming with him…but staff saw the “red eye” and got the prince out just in time. He also had a model and punctured skin on her leg…she sued but was paid off…
Marineland of the Pacific, California (1960s): Pilot whale “Bimbo” described as “psychotic” by Dr. M.E. Webber, a physician with an interest in whale and dolphin research. “Bimbo” was released August 1967 - after seven years in confinement - following incidents of aggression toward other animals and keepers, and having broken observation windows. (Duane Valentry, Big Star All at Sea, Sea Frontiers, September 1969, pp. 219-223)
Nootka 4 - April 1st 1989 - Sealand of the Pacific Canada
Trainer Henriette Huber fell into the whale pool after 6-year-old female Nootka 4 closed her mouth on her hand while scratching Nootka’s tongue. Several stitches were required to close the puncture wound.
During a night show, 15-year-old female Kayla had performed the first two songs of the show acceptably, and then did two ventral squirt bow cues. She responded well to both LRS (* see below) that occurred, and then received a primary reinforcement for the second LRS. She was then asked for a fluke splash to the back, and then asked to separate to the back pool. During the separation attempt, she lunged at her trainer, although no contact occurred. After several minutes, she separated into the back pool, allowing the show to continue.
Young male Cuddles became so increasingly aggressive, having a hold of at least two trainers, that keepers had to clean the pool from the protection of a shark cage. Cuddles also dragged keeper Don Robinson into the pool when he was at Dudley Zoo but that was possibly a PR stunt.
A trainer at the Loro Parque theme park on Tenerife is in hospital after she was injured this weekend during a training session with 6-year-old male Tekoa at the centre in Puerto de la Cruz. The Canarias 7 newspaper says the incident happened at the pre-show warm up on Saturday, when the orca crashed into the trainer, injuring her right lung and breaking her forearm in two places. She was rescued by two colleagues after the marine mammal dragged her down to the bottom of the pool. The trainer is now said to be stable after surgery on Saturday. Later it becomes know that the injured trainer is 29-year-old biologist Claudia Vollhardt from Germany, who has worked at the park since 2003. OME News write that it was a male orca that hit the trainer and dragged her down after the impact. Then that same animal grabbed the trainer by the arm and brought her back up to the surface.
There have been reports of trainers being held underwater by the mammals. In 1986, one trainer was taken to the hospital when he fell off young male Kandu 7 and was dragged by the leg around the pool during a stunt.
A dead man’s naked body was found at SeaWorld Florida in Orlando, scratched, bruised and draped over 18-year-old male Tilikum, the largest killer whale in captivity. The 27-year-old, later identified as a man with a history of mental illness, apparently made his way past security at SeaWorld, remaining in the park after it had closed. Wearing only his underwear, the man either jumped, fell or was pulled into Tilikum’s huge tank. A medical examiner concluded the man suffered hypothermia and drowned.