For significant spills, OR&R is responsible for providing scientific support to the Federal On-Scene Coordinator overseeing the response. Find news and information for notable incidents in which OR&R has been involved, including the 2010 Deepwater Horizon/BP blowout and the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill.
Under the National Contingency Plan and the National Response Plan, OR&R works with the U.S. Coast Guard, which is the FOSC for marine spills while the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency assumes this responsibility for inland spills.
OR&R has responded to thousands of spills over the years. In addition to emergency response to incidents, OR&R assesses damage to and restores plants, animals, and environments after a marine or coastal spill.
On March 24, 1989, the tanker Exxon Valdez grounded on Bligh Reef in Alaska's Prince William Sound, rupturing its hull and spilling nearly 11 million gallons of Prudhoe Bay crude oil into a remote, scenic, and biologically productive body of water. Prior to the 2010 Deepwater Horizon/BP oil spill, it was the largest single oil spill in U.S....