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Nov 14,2007
Russia deploys oil absorbers at spill site
by UPI

MOSCOW - Special oil-absorbing chemicals have been sent to the site of a weekend Black Sea-area spill where storms split a tanker, Russian emergency officials said.

"Work has begun to deliver special absorbents to Port Kavkaz to clean up the aftermath of the fuel oil spill in the Kerch Strait," Viktor Beltsov, deputy head of the ministry's information department told the Novosti news agency by telephone from Moscow.

A violent storm Sunday in the strait connecting the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov caused one oil tanker to split in two, spilling some 2,000 tons of oil. Crews have been gathering oil globs from beaches and Beltsov said by Wednesday some 870 tons of oil had been collected, the report said.

The Russian fisheries ministry said at least 9,000 fish were killed and regional officials said 30,000 birds were dead. The avian toll was expected to double.

The storm also sank four other cargo vessels and killed at least six sailors. Ukrainian and Russian officials said five sailors were still missing Wednesday, the report said.

© 2007 United Press International. All Rights Reserved.

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