Deep­wa­ter Hori­zon

Date April 2010


Lo­ca­tion: Gulf of Mex­ico, USA The Deep­wa­ter Hori­zon disas­ter is with­out a doubt the most high-pro­file spill of re­cent times. It did not in­volve a tanker, but an ex­plo­sion on an oil rig af­ter high-pres­sure meth­ane gas ex­panded into the drilling unit and ig­nited. Most of the work­ers on the rig es­caped, but 11 bod­ies were never found and the ef­fect on the en­vi­ron­ment around the site was tremen­dous. There were mul­ti­ple ef­forts to douse the flames burn­ing on the rig, all of which failed and the Deep­wa­ter Hori­zon even­tu­ally sank af­ter burn­ing for 36 straight hours. At first it was be­lieved that there was no oil leak, but two days af­ter the ex­plo­sion, a large oil slick be­gan to spread at the rig site. In the end, an es­ti­mated 210 mil­lion gal­lons of oil spilled into the ocean and af­fected the coast­lines of Louisiana, Mis­sis­sippi, Alabama and Florida.

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