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Trainers Notes: *These trainers notes may be too specific depending on the audience. Use your judgment and omit sections based on the intended audience. On April 20, 2010 an explosion of a Transocean drilling Rig, Deep Water Horizon, occurred in the US Gulf of Mexico. The Horizon was engaged in drilling activity on behalf of BP at Mississippi Canyon Block 252, about 52 miles southeast of Venice, La. Built in 2001, the Deepwater Horizon was 396 feet (121 m) long and 256 feet (78 m) wide and could accommodate up to 130 people. It was designed for operations in water depths of up to 8,000 feet (2,400 m). Maximum drill depth was 30,000 feet (9,100 m). The rig sank on April 22, 2010. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration estimated that up to 5,000 barrels a day, or about 210,000 gallons, of oil has recently leaked into the Gulf of Mexico. On April 30, 2010, the oil began washing ashore near the mouth of the Mississippi River on the Louisiana coast. Louisiana is home to 40 percent of the United States' wetlands and the oil threatens some 400 species of animals with the possibility of being the worst environmental disaster to hit the U.S. in two decades. The Transocean Drilling Incidence Response Website contains the most recent information regarding the unified command's response effort.  (http://www.deepwaterhorizonresponse.com/go/site/2931/)

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