SeaWorld loses appeal of ruling on trainers
Source: Lori Weisberg, U-T San Diego
SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment’s efforts to eventually get trainers back in the water with killer whales during public performances hit yet another setback this week.
The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission turned down SeaWorld’s request to reconsider a judge’s May 30 ruling that its animal trainers be physically separated from killer whales during performances.
Michael Wald, a spokesman for the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration, confirmed the Monday decision. It is now up to SeaWorld to appeal the judge’s order to the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta or Washington, D.C., he said.
“The Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission took no action on SeaWorld’s … requests to review the decision reached in May by Administrative Law Judge Ken S. Welsch,” said a statement released Tuesday by SeaWorld. “While Judge Welsch’s decision substantially reduced the classification and fine of the citation, it also contained errors in fact and the law. SeaWorld will decide within the next 60 days whether to appeal to the United States Court of Appeals.”
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