On May 12, 1976, three years after it was christened, the tremendous tanker Urquiola carrying 110,000 tons of Arabian crude oil struck a submerged object whereas passing by way of Sijo Blanco Channel whereas approaching an oil refinery port in La Coruna, Spain. The vessel started to leak cargo from the broken bow part. Due to the specter of explosion and fireplace, the Port Commandant ordered the Urquiola out of the harbor, away from the refinery and city of 200,000 inhabitants. While being assisted out of the harbor by two tugs, the leaking vessel grounded once more, additional rupturing the bow tanks. All of the crew, apart from the captain and pilot, deserted the ship when it started to record. On a rising tide, tidal currents pushed the ship firmly onto Yacentes financial institution. Shortly after the Urquiola exploded and started to burn killing the captain Rodriguez, the one particular person onboard at the moment. Black smoke unfold out over town of La Coruña, whereas oil unfold quickly all through the port and in the direction of the encompassing shoreline, changing into one of many best oil spill disasters in historical past.
An estimated 180,000-220,000 barrels of the cargo polluted the Spanish coast. Cleanup of the oiled shoreline was primarily completed by guide labor. Skimmers and booms had been used for water restoration with blended outcomes.
(Image: The Urquiola wreck)
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