We all remember back in February, when a tragic accident involving one of Seaworld's killer whales occurred. One of the whale's trainers had been drowned when the whale, Tilikum, pulled the trainer by her ponytail into the water. Normally, trainers survive incidents like these, but that was not the case this time. Initially, the family of the trainer did not want to press charges, and did not fault the park. But recently, government officials have decided that working conditions were NOT safe at the time of the incident, opening up the opportunity for lawsuit. Realizing that the incident could partly be the park's fault, the family has said that they may end up suing the park after all.
The government agency that decided that the conditions were not safe, OSHA, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, is pressing charges against the park, allowing the family to follow suit. Their job is to make sure that workplaces are safe for employees. In their reports, the government officials said that whale trainers deserve the same safety benefits of other fields of work, and it is time for amusement parks to be forced to provide safe conditions - and make sure that parks are no longer be able to get away with statements such as 'working with whales is inherently dangerous'. The park is predicted to respond with a statement saying that you can't take humane care of whales in captivity without the close contact that creates these incidents.
It is still in question as to whether or not the family will sue, but OSHA will do so no matter what the family's decision ends up being.