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http://www.cnn.com/2007/WORLD/europe....ap/index.html


MOSCOW, Russia (AP) -- A Russian oil tanker split in two during a fierce storm early Sunday, spilling some 560,000 gallons of fuel into a strait leading to the Black Sea in one of the worst environmental disasters in the region in years, authorities said.
Two freighters carrying sulfur also sank nearby in the Strait of Kerch, a narrow strait linking the Black Sea and the smaller Sea of Azov to the northeast, said Sergei Petrov, a spokesman for the regional branch of Russia's Emergency Situations Ministry.
Operations to rescue the crews of all three ships were under way, officials said.
The oil tanker, the Volganeft-139 -- loaded with about 1.3 million gallons of fuel oil -- was stranded several miles from shore. Stormy weather was preventing emergency workers from collected the spilled oil, authorities said.
"There is serious concern that the spill will continue," Oleg Mitvol, head of the state environmental safety watchdog Rosprorodnadzor said on Vesti 24 television.
He said it could take "several years" to clean up the spill, one of the worst in the region in recent years.
Maxim Stepanenko, a regional prosecutor, told Vesti 24 that the oil tanker -- designed during Soviet times to transport oil on rivers -- was not built to withstand a fierce storm. He said a similar tanker battered by storm developed a crack in its hull but hasn't yet leaked any oil.
Mitvol said while the spilled sulfur did not present an environmental danger, the two freighters could also leak fuel oil from their tanks, adding to the pollution.
A Turkish freighter also has run around in the strait, the RIA Novosti news agency quoted Vladimir Yerygin, chief administrator in the nearby Russian port city of Novorossiisk, as saying.
The Black Sea is bordered by Russia, Turkey, Romania, Bulgaria, Ukraine and Georgia.
 

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:eek:h
 

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damn that's gonna jack up that area... huge eco-disaster
 

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I guess charges might be filed against the crew and or the company
 

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and UP go the gas prices even more. look for a 10 cent jump tomorrow. bet gas hits $4 a gal for regular before christmas.
 
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