The Exxon Valdez oil spill, what went wrong?

Discussion in 'Green Room' started by Vanquished, Apr 21, 2006.

  1. Vanquished

    Vanquished Mr. Bananagrabber Political User

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    The Exxon Valdez was a super tanker, the 987 foot-long ship struck Bligh reef on March 24, 1989. When the ship hit it spilled 11 million gallons of crude oil into Prince William's Sound. The consequences were devastating.

    So what went wrong?

    In the accident there were many things that went wrong, from human error to engineering.

    The captain of the ship Joseph Hazelwood was accused of being drunk on the night of the accident. As well as a drunk captain, the ship had an inexperienced crew as well, the perfect recipe for disaster. Human error was a huge part but it was only on aspect of the entire disaster.

    What many will say is that the engineering of the ship was sub-par, this is probably true, for three main reasons. The first reason the engineering of the Exxon Valdez super-tanker was sub par was that it only had one hull. this meant that there was only one barrier between 50 million gallons of oil and the open ocean. After the inccident a new law was instituted being that by the year 2010 all oil tankers must be double hulled, preventing the immediate loss of oil. The second engineering blunder was that the steel hull, the only barrier between the oil and the water was only 3/4 of an inch thick, this was easily ripped open when it hit the reef. The Third major engineering failure of the Exxon Valdez was the outdated technology that was installed in the ship, instead of using the new GPS technology and more advanced radar, the Exxon Valdez was not outfitted with such technology.

    The Exxon Valdez oil spill was the worst or near worst spill ever, it is estimated that the spill killed 250,000 sea birds, 2,800 sea otters, 300 harbor seals, 250 bald eagles, up to 22 orcas, and billions of salmon and herring eggs immediately. Alaskans and animal activists everywhere were outraged, this kind of disaster should never have occured.

    The truly amazing problem with the Exxon Valdez spill is that the Exxon company could not efficiently clean up the oil, if it did at all. It was said that fisherman could clean the oil up easier using buckets than the Exxon company could with its skimmers.

    In the end, though the Exxon Valdez oil spill did not claim any human life, it should be considered one of the worst man provoked disasters in history. One thing nobody will ever forget is the combination of human and engineering error that caused such havok.
     
  2. technokid88

    technokid88 Part of a System Folding Team

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  3. Vanquished

    Vanquished Mr. Bananagrabber Political User

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    Not the only part though