M/V Anitra Crude Oil Spill

State TrusteeFederal TrusteeAO Bureau

Also Known As

Incident Type



New Jersey

Case Status



Big Stone Anchorage, Delaware River



Contaminants of Concern Include


Affected DOI Resources Include

Threatened and Endangered Species, Migratory Birds, DOI Managed Lands

Financial Summary

Restoration Funds Collected:


*Restoration Funds Allocated:


*Restoration Funds Remaining:


* Restoration Funds can contain multiple settlements/projects. All collections are placed in interest bearing accounts. For detailed information on individual settlements/ projects please visit: NRDAR Status Report

Case Description

On May 10, 1996, the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) reported that the Bahamian-flagged T/V Anitra spilled approximately 10,000 gallons of Nigerian light crude oil while the vessel was in the process of lightering more than 40 million gallons of oil. On May 19, 1996, the USCG reported that as much as 42,000 gallons of oil were released into Big Stone Anchorage, Delaware Bay, where the vessel was anchored. Cold and stormy weather during the spill caused the oil to mix into the water column, forming tarballs. The T/V Anitra was secured and boomed following the release. The USCG reported 12,000 gallons of oil were recovered in the vicinity of the vessel within the first 72 hours following the spill.

Over 50 miles of beaches were oiled over a 2-week period, including at least some oiling of several State wildlife management areas, two State parks, and the Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge. An estimated 3 miles of beach (Higbee and Sunset) were impacted with tarballs from May 12-16, 1996. On May 17, varying densities of tarballs washed up on 8 miles of Atlantic Ocean shoreline in Stone Harbor, Avalon, Sea Isle City, and Ocean City. The Governor of New Jersey declared a Limited State of Emergency in Cape May County, and limited public access to beaches. On May 18, the tarballs continued to drift northward and washed up on beaches in Longport, Margate, Ventnor, and Atlantic City. On May 19, tarballs came ashore in Brigantine and later as far north as Holgate.

Credit: USFWS

Case Documents

 Document TypeDocument NameDocument Date


 Factsheet Fact Sheet 08/01/2010


 Trustees Agreement Trustees/NGO Agreement  


 Consent Decree Consent Decree 11/23/2004


 Restoration Plan and Environmental Assessment Restoration Plan 12/14/2004

Map View

Case Contact

New Jersey Ecological Services Field Office

4 East Jimmie Leeds Road, Suite 4, Galloway, NJ 08205 | (609) 383-3938 | http://www.fws.gov/northeast/njfieldoffice/

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