A clip of a woman appearing to get swallowed by a humpback whale is taking the internet by storm, causing confusion and chaos as viewers scramble to figure out what happened to the unlucky whale-watcher.
Fear of the deep ocean isn’t an unusual phobia to have… but some TikTok users are now, unfortunately, aware of a brand-new phobia they have just acquired after watching a shocking video on the social media platform.
The clip was uploaded four days ago to TikTok by a user named ‘dolphin,’ who seems to solely upload clips of ocean life — particularly, humpback whales.
One such clip showed a group of paddle-boarders and kayakers doing their thing in the middle of the ocean, where a small, humpback whale was breaching the surface of the water.
Viewers scramble to figure out if woman in viral TikTok is unharmed
Shockingly, the video ends with the whale opening its mouth to seemingly gulp up one of the rowers right out of her seat in her single-person canoe.
Thus far, the clip has accrued well over half a million views, with people commenting across social media wondering if the rower is alright and what happened next.
It turns out that this viral clip may have been taken from another video filmed nearly a year ago, when two women were kayaking in California’s Avila Beach.
Luckily, both women emerged from the event alive and unscathed. It turns out that the kayaker wasn’t actually ever inside the whale’s mouth, at all; instead, she was merely submerged beneath the water due to the whale’s movements, although the angle of the footage certainly makes it look far more dangerous.
Other instances of people being swallowed by whales
Quite surprisingly, a very similar scenario purportedly went down about three months ago, after diver Michael Packard claimed he was diving for lobsters when a humpback whale appeared and swallowed him whole.
Luckily, the whale spat him back out upon realizing he was not a bunch of krill, causing bruising on his legs, but otherwise, leaving the diver unscathed (but definitely shaken up).
Although the woman in the viral TikTok was not actually ever inside the whale’s mouth, it’s “physically impossible” for all but one species of whale to swallow something as large as an adult human down its gullet.
The odds of such an event occurring have been cited as exceedingly rare — more specifically, a 1 in 1 trillion chance of happening. It looks like we’ve been seeing quite a few of these incredibly rare incidents as of late, leading experts to warn against getting too close to these majestic beasts.