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Shoot: Oil Spill from Tanker Tanio in Brittany

On March 7, 1980, the tanker Tanio, carrying 190,580 barrels of No. 6 fuel oil, broke in two off the coast of Brittany, France during a violent storm. The master and seven crew members died as a result of the accident. Approximately 98,955 barrels of oil spilled into the sea as a result of the breakup. The bow section, which still contained 36,650 barrels of oil, sank in 300 feet of water. Substantial amounts of oil continued to leak from the sunken bow until several small leaks in the bow were sealed in May. Strong northwest winds at the time of the incident moved the oil towards the Breton coast. Due to the high viscosity of the oil and severe weather conditions, containment or dispersal at sea was impossible. Consequently, the Breton coast (which had already received major oil impacts from the Torrey Canyon spill in 1967 and the Amoco Cadiz in 1978), was again severely oiled. Approximately 45 percent of the Amoco Cadiz spill area was affected by oil from the Tanio. Approximately 125 miles of the coastline of the two Departments of Finistere and Cotes-du-Nord were oiled. Both Departments implemented the Plan Polmar, the French national oil spill contingency plan, due to the severity of the coastal oiling. This enabled them to use the national army for cleanup operations. Personnel from the Civil Defense organization, fire service, local governments, commercial contractors, and local farmers were also involved in the cleanup. The International Tanker Owners Pollution Federation (ITOPF) provided technical advice and monitored cleanup activities on behalf of the International Oil Pollution Compensation (IOPC) Fund. Damages and costs incurred during cleanup exceeded $50 million.
Cleaning of Oil Pollution in Brittany
7 Mar, 1980
Cleaning of Oil Pollution in Brittany
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