Photos: Oil disasters

Oil disasters

Drilling and transporting oil around the world has led to disastrous accidents over the years.

DEEPWATER HORIZON: The Deepwater Horizon oil platform leans on its side before sinking into the Gulf of Mexico after an explosion. Eleven men were killed in the disaster, and the resulting leak of the wellhead below has spilled at least 6 million gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico. (Associated Press) April 22, 2010

IRAQ: An Iraqi man watches an oil spill burn in the Tigris River in Tikrit. The spill reached Tikrit after a bomb went off under a pipeline in the northern city of Beiji, setting off a fire and spilling huge quantities of crude oil into the Tigris River, a police official said. The U.S. military blamed the blast on insurgents. (Bassem Daham / Associated Press) Sept. 18, 2007

DELAWARE: Cleanup workers travel on the Delaware River after a tanker, en route to a New Jersey port, had a hole ripped in its hull by submerged debris, spilling 265,000 gallons of oil into the river. (David Swanson / Philadelphia Inquirer) Nov. 29, 2004

PIPER ALPHA: A firefighter battles the blaze on the oil platform Piper Alpha, shown burning in the background. An explosion on the North Sea platform northeast of Aberdeen, Scotland, killed 167 men.(AP Photo) August 7, 2004

SPAIN: A worker pauses while cleaning oil from the beach at Muxia, northern Spain, where the oil tanker Prestige spilled about 20 million gallons of oil. The region suspended offshore fishing for six months. (Santiago Lyon / Associated Press) Nov. 23, 2002

GALAPAGOS: Volunteer fishermen attempt to clear oil from the waters off San Cristobal in the Galapagos Islands after the Ecuadoran oil tanker Jessica (background) spilled 175,000 gallons of oil. On one of the affected islands in the ecologically fragile archipelago, 60% of the iguanas died in the year after the spill. (Agence-France Presse) Jan. 23, 2001

ERIKA: The Maltese-registered tanker Erika sinks after breaking in two in violent seas off the Brittany coast, polluting hundreds of miles of shoreline. (Marine Nationale) Dec. 13, 1999

OIL COVERED: Three baby sea lions covered in oil sit on an island sanctuary off Uruguay's coast after Panama's San Jorge tanker, carrying 370,000 barrels of crude oil, ran aground near the upscale resort of Punta del Este on its way from southern Argentina. An estimated 6,000 tons of oil were spilled. (Jose Luis Bello / El Pais) Feb. 24, 1997

JAPAN: Japanese soldiers, donning helmets and rubber protectors, battle with thick oil sludge on the shore of Mikuni, 200 miles west of Tokyo. A Russian tanker carrying 5.6 million gallons of oil sank in the Sea of Japan, and the resulting spill affected some 400 miles of coastline. (Katsumi Kasahara / Associated Press) Jan. 11, 1997

GULF WAR: An Iraqi tank, hit by U.S. fire, sits as a smoking wreck as oil wells burn in the background. (Los Angeles Times) Feb. 24,1991

EXXON VALDEZ: The body of a California gray whale washes up on Latoucha Island, Alaska, in the wake of the Valdez oil spill.(John Gaps III / Associated Press) April 9, 1989

AMOCO CADIZ: Explosive charges are fired near the wreck of the Amoco Cadiz, which broke apart off the coast of France and spilled 1.6 million barrels. It was the largest recorded spill at the time. (Spartaco Bodini / Associated Press) 1978

SANTA BARBARA: SANTA BARBARA: Workers clean oil from a Santa Barbara beach after a blowout on a Unocal rig six miles offshore spilled 3 million gallons. The disaster became an icon of the environmental movement.(Associated Press) Feb. 7, 1969

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