Terrifying moment ‘mermaid’ nearly DROWNS after her tail gets stuck in aquarium in front of horrified crowd – The Sun | The Sun

THIS is the terrifying moment a "mermaid" nearly drowned after her tail became entangled at the bottom of an aquarium tank.

Horrified spectators watched on as the performer began to struggle and their family day out took a turn for the worst.

The "mermaid", Gabriela Green-Thompson Kay, was performing an underwater routine for delighted children when disaster struck.

She waved and blew kisses shortly before she attempted to surface for air.

But her costume became caught, pining her beneath the water as she began to drown.

Fortunately the panicked young woman deployed a life-saving technique dubbed " tail evacuation" where she was able to eventually wriggle out of the costume.

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The method involves using her hands to force the tail down her legs and off of her body.

Once free, Gabriela swam desperately for the top of the tank and was seen gasping for air, shaken up by the experience.

A video of the nightmare ordeal has been shared on TikTok and spreads awareness at the possible dangers of the costumes.

The clip, taken on Nov 25 at the Randburg Shopping Mall in South Africa, has now racked up more than 4.2million views and 142,000 likes.

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Gabriela also shared the video on her own Facebook account and said: "As a professional we are trained to release our tails when in a dangerous situation.

"Unfortunately my tail got caught and I was unable to detach, but I knew what to do in order to stay safe.

"Remember to stay safe around water this festive season. Lots of love and bubbles."

Insyirah Moidu, a fellow "mermaid", told The Straits Times that performers usually use two types of costumes, fabric tails and silicone tails, but she feels fabric tails are safer.

She said: "I do not perform with silicone tails for safety reasons because there is no quick release system for that.

"Silicone tails are (like) a second skin, so it takes some time to get out of."

And added that there is a special technique to quickly remove the tail called "tail evacuation."

Cara Neo, also a "mermaid," explained that aquarium tank performances are the most challenging and the right training is vital.

She said: "Just because someone can swim, has worn a "mermaid" tail, or claims they have a certification, does not mean they’re performance-safe."

She added that performers should know their routine from back to front and have a “direct line of communication” during the performance with someone who can immediately tell if they are in trouble.

She concluded: “Lastly, I listen to my body. If I need to adapt a move, I’ll adapt it.

"When you’re a seasoned professional, you have the tools to be able to modify parts of a performance if you have to, without the audience realising it."

Viewers of the frightening video were quick to share their reactions.

Two appeared more concerned for the spectators than the performer.

"How unprofessional, think of the scared children," wrote one.

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"Imagine a kid who believed in mermaids seeing her strip her tail," said another.

But a third supported Gabriela, writing: "God bless our hustle… Sometimes we go through difficulties," and another said:"Glad she is OK Thank God."

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