40 years on, Brittany tanker wreck is magnet for divers

The wreck of the super tanker Amoco-Cadiz has become a popular haunt for divers
The wreck of the super tanker Amoco-Cadiz has become a popular haunt for divers

Forty years after it sank, the remains of a super tanker wrecked off northwestern France have become a favourite spot for divers when the weather allows.

On March 16, 1978, the Amoco Cadiz ran aground off the Brittany coast, causing one of the world's worst oil pollution disasters.

The 227,000-ton tanker broke up on the reefs off the small fishing port of Portsall, covering miles of coastline in oil.

Its hull, broken into three separate rusted parts and now covered in seaweed, is slowly sinking into the seabed.

Thousands of soldiers and volunteers spent three months cleaning up 360 kilometres (220 miles) of coastline and trying to save hundreds of oil-coated sea birds.

Local mayors and regional authorities spent 14 years tied up in court before winning compensation from the US company that operated the ship.

  • The seaweed-covered hull of the Amoco Cadiz is slowly sinking into the sea bed
    The seaweed-covered hull of the Amoco Cadiz is slowly sinking into the sea bed
  • The wreck of the Amoco-Cadiz lies 25 metres under the sea off the coast of Portsall, north-eastern France
    The wreck of the Amoco-Cadiz lies 25 metres under the sea off the coast of Portsall, north-eastern France
  • The anchor of the Amoco-Cadiz lies at the entrance of Portsall harbour
    The anchor of the Amoco-Cadiz lies at the entrance of Portsall harbour

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© 2018 AFP

Citation: 40 years on, Brittany tanker wreck is magnet for divers (2018, October 9) retrieved 25 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-10-years-brittany-tanker-magnet-divers.html
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