These Photos Show How A Major Oil Spill In California Has Blackened Beaches As Workers Race To Clean The Mess

Over the weekend, California experienced an environmental disaster after a major oil spill off the coast of Orange County.

California officials have been racing to contain a major oil spill off the coast of Orange County that occurred when a ruptured pipeline sent at least 126,000 gallons of crude into the water.

Officials were investigating whether a ship's anchor may have been to blame for the rupture over the weekend, and said Monday that the size of the spill may rise to 144,000 gallons of crude, which has reached shorelines and state parks. With oil slicks intruding on wetlands and preserves, Gov. Gavin Newsom declared a state of emergency to assist with cleanup efforts.

Here's a look at the disaster and how people are trying to contain it:

Closeup view of the beach with black oil mixed in with sand
Young man arranges signs on the beach warning against swimming
A cleanup worker wears a life vest and coveralls covered with dark residue from the oil spill
A tool for cleanup is covered in gooey remnants from the oil spill
A seagull is seen picking apart a dead fish on the beach
Gloved hands hold a small bird that is covered in oil from the oil spill
A wave approaches the blackened beach in California as oil drifts in from the spill
A man holds an oil globule larger than his hand that was found on the beach
Workers in skiffs navigate oil-filled waters and attempt to clean up the mess from the oil spill
The carcass of a large fish, its skull visible, lies on blackened sand