On April 20, 2010, off the coast of Louisiana in the Gulf of Mexico, BP's Deepwater Horizon offshore drilling rig experienced a catastrophic equipment failure, igniting an enormous fireball that killed 11 people and could be seen as far as 40 miles away.
In the days following the explosion, it became evident that a large-scale environmental disaster had occurred, as approximately 210 million gallons of oil spewed into the Gulf of Mexico. For 87 days, oil gushed freely into the waters, leaving the beaches unusable and killing thousands of animals and destroying wildlife habitats. While much of the oil has since been contained, the full impact of the spill on the environment is still largely unknown.
Here are some of the harrowing scenes from the largest oil spill in US history: