Hurricane-caused oil spills threaten gulf

September 9, 2005

Oil from storage tanks ruptured by Hurricane Katrina is threatening the Gulf of Mexico.

An estimated 4 million gallons of crude oil has flowed into the lower Mississippi river and surrounding wetlands -- a spillage approximately a third the size of that caused when the tanker Exxon Valdez ran aground off Alaska in 1989, the New York Times reported Friday.

Officials said they were uncertain how much of the oil will eventually flow into the Gulf since access to the area can only be made by water and it was still unclear exactly how much oil has been lost, The Times said.

Copyright 2005 by United Press International

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