Gulf Oil Disaster 2010

Disaster in the Gulf

Oil from the Deepwater Horizon disaster washes ashore in Orange Beach, Ala., on June 12, 2010. Large amounts of crude leaking from BP's Macondo well battered the Alabama coast, leaving oil deposits 4 to 6 inches thick on the beach. (AP Photo/Dave Martin)

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Recent images| Hard times for oystermen | Scientists look for oil plumes | Help for oiled birds | Worst U.S. environmental disasters | Obama visits Gulf Coast | Endangered turtle rescue | | New Orleans Saints raise morale | Gulf Coast reacts to the threat | The explosion and sinking

Overview of the disaster

An accident on April 20 deep in the Gulf of Mexico unleashed the largest offshore oil spill in U.S. history. The Gulf Coast is still coping with environmental issues and economic damage following the explosion at the Deepwater Horizon, an oil rig working BP’s Macondo well off the coast of Louisiana. Eleven people were killed in the blowout and the fire that followed, which sank the rig on April 22. Nearly 5 million gallons of oil leaked from the well over more than three months, despite many efforts to stanch the flow. In response to the disaster, the Obama administration enacted a controversial six-month ban on deep-water drilling. The moratorium was seen by many in the Gulf Coast as a severe blow to the region, which was still struggling to rebuild its economy five years after the devastation of Hurricane Katrina.

Macondo well containment efforts

Oil spill resources

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