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Bad Shamu: Trainer Hospitalized After SeaWorld Killer Whale Attacks; 'Pulled Down Twice'

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SAN DIEGO, California -- A killer whale attacked a trainer during a show Wednesday at SeaWorld Adventure Park, sending the man to the hospital but sparing him serious injury, authorities said.

Firefighters were prepared to rescue the 33-year-old trainer from the pool after receiving a call at 5 p.m. that Shamu, the killer whale, may have injured a trainer, said Maurice Luque, a department spokesman. The man escaped before the crew arrived.

"He was pulled down at least twice by the whale and then let go," Luque said. "He did not have life-threatening injuries. He was conscious the whole time."

Luque referred additional questions to SeaWorld. Officials at the park did not immediately respond to phone messages.

According to the SeaWorld's Web site, a show at 4:30 p.m. "blends new killer whale behaviors with elaborate set pieces, music, choreography and state-of-the-art multimedia." The show is set to music recorded by the Czech Philharmonic Opera.

The unidentified trainer was taken to UCSD Medical Center, Luque said.

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