Oil Spill Blackens Thai Island Beaches

Last Saturday, July 27, about 13,200 gallons (50,000 liters) of crude oil spilled into the Gulf of Thailand, pouring from a leaky pipeline, creating a huge slick miles wide. The oil slick soon began washing ashore on the tourist island of Samet, fouling several popular white sand beaches, and now has spread to nearby smaller islands. Pipeline operator PTT Global Chemical Plc. has apologized and pledges to have the spill cleaned within days, as tourism officials have raised alarms about the sharp drop in tourist dollars. Gathered here are images of the early clean-up work taking place on Thailand's Samet Island.

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