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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Gulf Coast Oil Spill

The federal government is taking public health actions to (1) protect workers and minimize exposure to hazardous substances among response personnel and the general public, (2) ensure the safety of seafood from areas affected by the oil spill, (3) monitor the potential health impacts of the oil spill in the short and long-term, and (4) facilitate access to care to those impacted by the spill. Learn More >>

For the most Current Gulf Recovery information visit the Restore the Gulf site. is a one-stop resource for interagency news, information on assistance programs, and  updates on response efforts related to the Gulf Oil Spill.

The deepwater drilling rig Deepwater Horizon suffered an explosion and fire on April 20, 2010, and sank 2 days later. On the 24th of April, oil was discovered to be leaking from two locations in the well pipe system. Since then, oil has continued to leak from the well. The resulting oil spill has had a variety of environmental and economic impacts. The primary areas impacted are the Gulf Coast States of Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida, particularly the coastal zones of these states. BP, as one of the responsible parties, is liable under the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 for the direct cleanup costs and providing certain assistance to those affected by the oil spill, per the Oil Pollution Act of 1990.


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  • This page last reviewed: July 11, 2010