ENVIRONMENT
03/24/2014 12:52 pm ET

Emergency Responders Remember Exxon Valdez Spill's Impact On Wildlife, 25 Years Later

"Shortly after midnight on March 24, 1989, the Exxon Valdez struck Blight Reef in pristine Prince William Sound, Alaska, home to over 200 bird species."

What followed would become one of the worst environmental disasters in history as 10.8 million gallons of crude washed over 1,300 miles of coastline, smothering everything in its path. Many serious impacts from the Exxon Valdez oil spill still linger, 25 years later.

Three emergency responders with International Bird Rescue, a wildlife relief organization specializing in oiled bird care, sat down to share their experiences surrounding the spill "that changed everything." The group estimates between 100,000 and 250,000 seabirds were killed in the months following the accident.

"The Exxon Valdez spill was one absolutely for the record books -- it was one that required stamina, intestinal fortitude and diplomacy as you could never imagine needing before," Mimi Wood Harris, an emergency responder with the group, says in the clip.

Watch the video above, and take a look at some of the most poignant photos from the disaster here.

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BEFORE YOU GO

PHOTO GALLERY
Exxon Valdez Spill Photos
CONVERSATIONS