OIL-TANKER-BREAKS-UP

november 11,2007. . . .
A severe storm has broken a Russian oil tanker in two between the Azov and Black Seas, spilling fuel oil, in what a Russian official has called an "environmental disaster".

According to Rosprirodnadzor, the state environment agency, about 2,000 tonnes of fuel oil had spilled from the tanker.

But Viktor Beltsov, the emergencies ministry spokesman, said approximately 1,200 tonnes had leaked into the sea.

The Volganeft-139, the tanker, was on its way from the port of Azov in the southern Russian region of Rostov to Kerch in Ukraine's eastern Crimea when high waves broke its hull at around 0445 (0145 GMT) on Sunday, Russian media reported.The tanker, designed primarily for rivers and in service since 1978, was carrying 4,000 tonnes of fuel oil in total. . . . . . . . .. .. . .. . . . .. THE ABOVE NEWS ITEM COURTESY OF AL JAZEERA . . . . . . . . . . . .IT IS BEING CALLED AN ENVIRONMENTAL DISASTER BY SOME OF THE WITNESSES.OTHER SHIPS CARRYING CORROSIVE CHEMICALS WERE ALSO CAUGHT IN THE VIOLENT STORM.

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