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Emergency ResponseHome | Image Galleries | Emergency Response

Exxon Valdez Oil Spill

Photos taken after the tanker Exxon Valdez grounded on Bligh Reef in the upper part of Prince William Sound on March 24, 1989. The tanker was carrying approximately 53 million gallons of crude oil. Within a few days, it had spilled almost 11 million gallons of the oil into Prince William Sound.

Click on an image below to see the full image.

Aerial view of loading piers at the Vladez terminal

Exxon Valdez - oil terminal Loading Piers at the Valdez Terminal

Exxon Valdez in surf

Exxon Valdez - grounded on Bligh Reef Shortly after leaving the Port of Valdez

Two ships side by side

Exxon Valdez - lightering remaining cargo From the Exxon Valdez (left) to the Exxon Baton Rouge

Aerial view of the Exxon Valdez surrounded by boom

Exxon Valdez - surrounded by boom The Exxon Valdez Refloated

Ocean surface with streaks through heavily oiled surface

Exxon Valdez - heavy sheen on sea surface Heavy Sheens of Oil

Aerial view of boom in water around salmon hatchery

Exxon Valdez - boom around salmon hatchery Responders Tried to Protect Especially Sensitive Locations

oil pooled among rocks

Exxon Valdez - oil pooled among rocks Pooled Oil Stranded in Rocks

Stick dipped in pool of oil on rocky beach

Exxon Valdez - pools of oil on rocky beach Rocky Beach

Two boats towing U-shaped boom

Exxon Valdez - boom, barge, and skimmer Cleanup Operations

Two boats towing a collection boom

Exxon Vladez - skimming operation Oil Being Skimmed

Three people planning

Exxon Valdez - scene in the command center NOAA Scientists at Work

Man standing in front of oiled rocks

Exxon valdez - oil high on beach front Northwest Bay on Knight Island

Oiled rocky beach

Exxon Valdez - oiled beach at Herring Bay Herring Bay

Three workers on oiled shore with ship in background

Exxon Valdez - transport of oiled Workers Transporting Captured Wildlife

Workers spray oiled rocky shore with hot water

Exxon Valdez - high-pressure, hot-water washing High Pressure Hot Water Flushing

Workers spraying rocks along shoreline with water

Exxon Valdez - boom preventing oil refloating Boom Prevents Oil Refloating

Refloated oil in shallows near shoreline. Some areas are boomed.

Exxon Valdez - sediment plumes and sheens Sediment Plumes and Sheens

Oiled shoreline

Exxon Valdez - Block Island before washing Block Island Before Washing

Partially boomed area of shoreline and shallows

Exxon Valdez - Block Island after washing Block Island After Washing

Woman examines pooled oil among rocks

Exxon Valdez - depth of oil penetration Depth of Oil Penetration

Woman digging trench in sand with shovel

Exxon Valdez - trenching to measure oil penetration Researcher Digs Trench

Piles of garbage in plastic bags

Exxon Valdez - cleanup debris Bags of Exxon Valdez Cleanup Debris

Related Pages on Our Site
  • Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Overview of the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill in Prince William Sound, Alaska. Includes links to many related resources, including photo galleries.
  • Response to the Exxon Valdez Spill Within hours after the tanker Exxon Valdez spilled nearly 11 million gallons of crude oil into Alaska's Prince William Sound on March 24, 1989, a team of NOAA OR&R scientists arrived on-scene.
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