Exxon Valdez

Exxon Valdez


Exxon Valdez is an oil tanker that transported oil worldwide until a tragic incident transpired that caused chaos for all of its stakeholders. On March 24th, 1989, Exxon Valdez spilled oil in the Prince William Sound in Alaska. This incident is considered a human caused environmental disaster and it’s on the top list of the world’s largest oil spills.

What Happened?

The Exxon Valdez had departed from the Valdez terminal in Alaska at 9:12 pm on March 23rd, 1989 and was bound to Long Beach, California. The ship was sailing through the inbound lane to avoid icebergs; it was carrying 53.1 million U.S. gallons of oil. During the sailing, the vessel struck the Bligh Reef; within six hours of the grounding it spilled approximately 10.8 million U.S. gallons or approximately 40 million liters of Prudhoe Bay crude oil covering 11,000,000 square miles of ocean. Eight tanks were damaged out of eleven tanks. It is important to note that the sea was a habitant for salmon, sea otters, seals and seabirds. The Bligh Reef is also known as the Bligh Island Reef which is off the Coast of Bligh Island. Bligh Reef serves as a fishing ground and shrimp harvesting.
As if this was not bad enough, three days after the vessel grounded, a storm pushed large quantities of fresh oil onto the rocky shores of many of the beaches in the Knight Island chain.
Exxon embarked on a cleanup campaign that cost Exxon a lot of money; it is the most expensive oil spill cleanup there has ever been. They employed more than 11,000 Alaskan residents; some Exxon employees worked along with these residents to try to restore the environment.
They also experimented with one trial explosion during the early stages of the spill. This venture was successful, and it reduced oil from 113,400 liters to 1,134 liters of removable residue, but because of bad weather conditions no additional burning was attempted in this cleanup effort.
The National Transportation Safety Board investigated...

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