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SeaWorld Removing Emergency Floor Lifts In Killer Whale Pools

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ORLANDO (CBSMiami/AP) — SeaWorld is removing the emergency lifting floors at the bottom of orca pools that were installed after the death of trainer, saying they are no longer needed.

SeaWorld officials said Wednesday that the floors will be removed at its parks in Orlando, San Diego and San Antonio.

The deep-water lifting floors were installed after trainer Dawn Brancheau was killed by an orca in 2010. They were designed to lift trainers and orcas out of deep water in an emergency.

SeaWorld officials say training and medical care are now being conducted in shallower water, so the lifting floors are no longer needed.

SeaWorld has been in the crosshairs of animal rights activists since the release of the documentary "Blackfish." The movie chronicled the whale that caused Brancheau's death.

(TM and © Copyright 2016 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2016 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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