February 23, 1996
Web posted at: 11:50 p.m. EST (0450 GMT)
ANGLE, Wales (CNN) -- There was a flurry of finger pointing Friday in the aftermath of a 20 million gallon oil spill off the coast of Wales near a wildlife sanctuary.
The blame is being placed by some on the British government as well as human error, but in any case, compensation claims from the spill promise to run into the millions of dollars. The February 15 leak was almost twice the size of the notorious Exxon Valdez spill in Prince William Sound near Alaska in 1989.
Environmentalists discovered hundreds of sea birds covered in oil along the saturated beaches Friday. At Angle, 6 miles west of the town of Milford Haven, the oil was ankle-deep on shore.
Chemicals were being sprayed on the 12-mile slick. On the beaches, crews used large skimmers with rotating blades to lift the oil off the incoming tide.
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