What causes oil spills?

Answer

One of the primary causes of oil spilling into marine environments in an oil spill is people who are careless or make mistakes, according to the Office of Response and Restoration. Such incidents involve barrages, tankers, refineries, pipelines and storage facilities. Other causes include equipment breakdowns, natural disasters and deliberate acts, such as terrorism, war, vandalism or illegal dumping.

The Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Trustee Council lists several reasons that this tanker ran aground in March 1989. They are all acts of carelessness or human mistakes. While tests showed the captain of the Valdez to have alcohol in his system several hours after the accident, the state of Alaska found him not guilty of operating the vessel under the influence of alcohol.

As oil floats on the ocean, it spreads rapidly across the surface to form an oil slick. Eventually, it spreads to form a very thin layer, known as a sheen, with a rainbow-like appearance. Oil spills are harmful to fish, shellfish, birds and marine animals. The oil affects the ability of fur and feathers to repel water and insulate the animals from the elements. Oil is also toxic to animals that ingest it in attempts to clean themselves.

While the Exxon Valdez spill is no longer among the largest 50 oil spills, it affected 1,300 miles of shoreline. Marine biologists estimate it to have killed 250,000 seabirds, 2,800 sea otters and 22 killer whales, according to the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Trustee Council.

Q&A Related to "What causes oil spills?"
Some of the oil spills in the oceans come from natural seeps. Natural seeps are the result of crude oil seepage from geological strata underneath the ocean floor into the water. Most
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Please see related questions: The gulf oil spill may refer to several oil spills: Any of the Gulf of Mexico Oil spills The Gulf War oil spill. Any of the Persian Gulf oil spills.
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The layer of oil on the water spreads out so thin, its thickness reaches a small multiple of the wavelength of visible light. (A few micrometers, basically.) That means light entering
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'Maré negra' is a Portuguese equivalent of 'oil spill'. The feminine noun 'maré' , which literally means 'tide', takes as its singular definite article 'a' ['the'],
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1 Additional Answer
Ask.com Answer for: what causes oil spills
Oil spills can happen for a variety of reasons, including oil tanker accidents (such as the Exxon Valdez), blowouts of undersea oil wells, or even natural seepage due to tectonic plate shifts.
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