A Moscow River Erupts In Flames After An Oil Spill

Published April 22, 2016
Updated January 31, 2019

A gigantic of plume of a black smoke erupted on a Moscow river after a cracked underwater pipeline caused an oil spill.

Last year, a cracked underwater pipeline spilled oil onto a Moscow river, resulting in a massive fire.

A towering plume of black smoke erupted from the site of the fire. Witnesses reported being able to see the smoke from nine miles away.

Police told Russia Today that nearby grass “combusted,” leading the oil on the river to catch fire as well.

Initially, Transneft, the largest oil pipeline company in the world, claimed responsibility for the incident.

The company blamed a faulty pipeline carrying jet kerosene, diesel, and gasoline to a nearby oil refinery for setting the Moscow river ablaze.

However, a statement from the company claims that “no oil product pipeline damage was discovered” during an inspection.

“A two-hour-long check has shown that the main pipeline is operating normally,” Igor Demin, a spokesperson for Transeft, told Russia Today.

No fatalities were reported at the time of incident, though three people were hospitalized for smoke inhalation.

According the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, there about 20,000 oil spills per year.

The after effects of the 2010 BP Oil Spill, when an oil well off the Gulf of Mexico exploded, devastated ecosystems in places like Louisiana.

In Barataria Bay, for instance, oil smothered the roots of Mangrove trees, destroying the islands held together by the trees’ roots.

BP has spent $28 billion to clean up and restore the of Gulf of Mexico and on payouts to economic victims of the oil spill.

In late 2015, an oil rig operated by the State Oil Company of Azerbaijan caught on fire in the Caspian Sea.

11 workers died in the incident and 19 are missing.

The fire began after a natural gas pipeline exploded during a storm.

As of February of this year, the fire was still burning. The Wall Street Journal reported that this is “the worst accident in the history of Azerbaijan’s oil industry.”

Elisabeth Sherman
Elisabeth Sherman is a writer living in Jersey City, New Jersey.