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Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California

SeaWorld Challenges Ban on Close Contact with Orcas

The ban stems from a 2010 attack that left a whale trainer dead.

SeaWorld is contesting a ban against close contact with orca whales which was came into effect after a killer whale drowned a trainer in 2010.

The marine park is specifically opposing two violations in a citation imposed by the Occupational Health and Safety Administration, calling the reprimand beyond the scope of the law.

Lawyers for SeaWorld say a ban on close contact with whales severely hurts the company's business model. 

A three-judge panel at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia heard the arguments Tuesday. 

The Court of Appeals is expected to decide within the next few months whether to lift the restrictions on close contact with whales.

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