Saturday, 26 February 2011

General Overview of History of Oil Spills

This article mentions some of the worst cases in oil spill history in recent times. You can read on to understand the facts related to these oil spills.
The recent oil spills at a drilling site of BP in the Gulf Of Mexico, caused by an explosion of the Deep Water Horizon off shore drilling rig has proved to be a major environmental disaster of recent times. The daily oil spill at its worst is estimated to reach the staggering figure of 2.5 million gallons a day.
Viewed in historical perspective, there are many other cases of oil-spills caused by various factors. Some of the worst cases in oil-spill history in recent times are recalled here.
1976- On 15th December, Argo Merchant was grounded in high wind near Nantucket Island Massachusetts. As a result, there was a spill of 7.7 million gallons fuel oil.
1978- On March 16 1978, Amoco Cadiz ran aground off the coast of Brittany, France. The cargo of 68.7 million gallons of oil was spilled into the sea.
1979- On november1, the Burmah Agate had a collision with a freighter Mimosa in the Mexican Gulf..This accident caused both a fire and an explosion on the oil cargo ship that lasted for more than two months. Around 2.6 million gallons of oil had been spilled in the environment.
1979- On June 3, the Exploratory Well of Ixtoc 1 collapsed in the Campeche Bay of Mexico. Till the time the well was brought under control, which was sometime in March 1980, the oil spill in the bay was around 140 million gallons. The ixtoc 1 spill remains the second largest incident in oil-spill history, till today.
1989-On march 24, Exxon Valdez was traveling in the coast of Alaska. It ran aground on Bligh Reef in Prince William Sound, Alaska and spilled 10.8 million gallons of oil. The environmental pollution caused is still quoted as one of the most severe in oil-spill history.
1990- As a result of a lightning accident and consequent fire, Mega Borg oil-spill was 5.1 million gallons near Galveston in Texas, on June 8th 1990.
1990- On March 6 1990, an explosion occurred on Cibro Savannah and the ship caught fire while leaving the pier at Linden, New Jersey. After the incident, oil of 127000 gallons stayed unaccounted for. The amount of spill could not be determined.
1993- This was a case of the most improbable in the oil spill history. On 10th august 1993, three ships collided in Tampa Bay Florida. The Bouchard 155 carrying oil spilled around 336000 gallons of fuel oil into Tampa Bay.
The biggest incident in oil spill history occurred in late January 1991, when towards the end of the Gulf War, the Army in Iraq, destroyed tanker, oil terminals and wells in Kuwait. This caused release of about 8 million barrels of oil into the Persian Gulf. The oil slick in this largest case of oil spill history, reached a bewildering size of 101 miles by 42 miles and was 5 inches thick.
A lot of oil has been spilled according to the oil spill history. This must have affected wildlife and environment in a very negative manner. Proper safety and prevention measures need to be taken to prevent such oil spills in future.
Article Source: 
Ruth Caldon - EzineArticles Expert Author