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U.S.

BP
spill
Gulf of
Mexico
MEXICO
Ixtoc I spill
Mexico City

400 km

400 miles
Pacific
Ocean
Largest
accidental oil spill ever
June 3, 1979 Blowout at Ixtoc I
exploratory well 160 ft. (49 m)
underwater; rig catches fire, sinks;
leaks 10,000-30,000 barrels a day

March 23, 1980 Well capped after


two relief wells drilled; about
3.3 million barrels spilled
Source: NOAA, McClatchy
Washington Bureau © 2010 MCT