• What is an oil spill
• How does it occurs
• Human impacts
• Its environmental effects
• Its Prevention
• Its clean up and recovery
• Equipment's used
What Is An “OIL SPILL” ?
• An oil spill is the release
of a liquid petroleum
hydrocarbon into the
marine areas, due to
human activity, and is a
form of pollution. The
term is usually applied to
marine oil spills, where oil
is released into the ocean
or coastal waters, but
spills may also occur on
How Does It Occurs ?
• Oil spills may occur due to release of crude
oil from tankers, offshore platforms, drilling
rigs and wells, as well as spills of refined
petroleum products (such as gasoline,
diesel) and their by-products, heavier fuels
used by large ships such as bunker fuel, or
the spill of any oily refuse or waste oil.
Human Impacts Of Spills
• An oil spill represents an immediate fire hazard. The
Kuwaiti oil fires produced air pollution that caused
• The Deep-water Horizon explosion killed 11 oil rig
workers. The fire resulting from the Static Charge,
which killed 47 and destroyed half of the town's
• Contamination can have an economic impact on
tourism and marine resource extraction industries.
For example, the Deep-water Horizon oil spill
impacted beach tourism and fishing along the Gulf
Deepwater Horizon oil spill.
April 20, 2010
Gulf of Mexico, Louisiana, United
Kuwaiti oil fires 1991
• Oil penetrates into the structure of the plumage
of birds and the fur of mammals, reducing its
insulating ability, and making them more
vulnerable to temperature fluctuations and
much less buoyant in the water.
• Heavily furred marine mammals exposed to oil
spills are affected in similar ways. Oil coats the
fur of sea otters and seals, reducing its
insulating effect, and leading to fluctuations in
body temperature and hypothermia.
• Some birds exposed to petroleum also
experience changes in their hormonal
balance, including changes in their
• Oil can also blind an animal, leaving it
defenseless. The ingestion of oil causes
dehydration and impairs the digestive
process. Animals can be poisoned, and
may die from oil entering the lungs or
An oiled bird from Oil Spill in San
Francisco Bay , 11/09/2007
A bird covered in oil from the Black
Sea oil spill, 12/11/2007
1. Double-hulling - build double hulls into vessels, which
reduces the risk and severity of a spill in case of a
collision or grounding. Existing single- hull vessels
can also be rebuilt to have a double hull.
2. Secondary containment - methods to prevent
releases of oil or hydrocarbons into environment.
3. Blowout Preventer (BOP’s)
4. Well castings
5. Making shipping safer
6. Keeping the navigator informed
Methods for cleaning up
1. Bioremediation: use of microorganisms (Oil Zappers) or
biological agents to break down or remove oil.
2. Dredging: for oils dispersed with detergents and other oils
denser than water.
3. Skimming: Requires calm waters at all times during the
4. Solidifying: Solidifiers are composed of dry hydrophobic
polymers that both adsorb and absorb. They clean up oil
spills by changing the physical state of spilled oil from liquid
to a semi-solid or a rubber-like material that floats on water.
5. Vacuum and centrifuge: oil can be sucked up along with the
water, and then a centrifuge can be used to separate the oil
from the water - allowing a tanker to be filled with near pure
A U.S. Air Force Reserve plane
sprays Corexit dispersant over the
Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the
Gulf of Mexico.
20 April – 15 July 2010
Clean-up efforts after the Exxon
Valdez oil spill Alaska.
March 24, 1989
Equipment used includes :
1. Booms: large floating barriers that round up
oil and lift the oil off the water
2. Skimmers: skim the oil
3. Sorbents: large absorbents that absorb oil
4. Chemical and biological agents: helps to
break down the oil
5. Vacuums: remove oil from beaches and
6. Shovels and other road equipment: typically
used to clean up oil on beaches
1. "Lingering Lessons of the Exxon Valdez Oil
Spill". Commondreams.org. 2004-03-22.
2. CNN.com, Kuwait still recovering from Gulf War
fires, 3 Jan. 2003
3. Guided by :Harshvardhan Tiwari, Bsc. Fire &
Safety, NEBOSH, PDIETM (MGLI), Sr. Officer
HSE (Health, Safety, Environment) , (John 18
Drilling Rig, Barmer, Rajasthan)