M/T Athos I

Athos I lists to starboard the day after the spill began.
Athos I lists to starboard the day after the spill began.

“In the Darby Creek Restoration Project the removal of three dams opened more than 2.7 miles of habitat for a range of resident and migratory fish. Shad and river herring species once supported the largest and most important commercial and recreational fisheries on the Atlantic Coast. This restoration benefits fish, wildlife, anglers, and others who value robust natural habitats.” 

Mary Andrews
NOAA Environmental Engineer


Mary Andrews
NOAA Restoration Center
Annapolis, MD
(410) 267- 5644

Case Documents

M/T Athos I

Oil Spill | Delaware River, New Jersey | November 2004


What Happened?

On November 26, 2004, the M/T Athos I hit several submerged objects in the Delaware River while preparing to dock at a refinery in Paulsboro, New Jersey. A nine-ton anchor punctured the vessel’s bottom, releasing nearly 265,000 gallons of crude oil into the Delaware River and nearby tributaries.


What Were the Impacts?

Oil from the ruptured tanker spread 115 miles downriver, impacting 280 miles of shoreline in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Delaware. NOAA worked with other trustees Government officials acting on behalf of the public when there is injury to, destruction of, loss of, or threat to natural resources. to assess the impacts of the spill. We identified injuries to shoreline habitats, birds, and benthic habitat. Recreational uses were affected as well, with negative effects on boating, fishing, and hunting. The incident also forced the U.S. Coast Guard to close the Delaware River to commercial traffic for more than a week.


What’s Happening Now?

In 2010, the trustees received $27.5 million for ten restoration projects designed to benefit the environment, coastal communities, and economy in the Delaware River watershed. Details on each project can be found in the Restoration Plan.

  1. Lardner's Point, Philadelphia

    Shoreline Restoration

    Status: Monitoring phase

  2. Darby Creek, Pennsylvania

    Dam Removals and Stream Habitat Restoration

    Status: Monitoring phase

  3. John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge, Pennsylvania

    Freshwater Tidal Wetland Restoration

    Status: Planning and design phase

  4. Little Tinicum Island, Pennsylvania

    Trail Improvements

    Status: Maintenance

  5. Augustine, Delaware

    Rock Jetty Restoration

    Status: No longer feasible and process to select new project is underway

  6. Mad Horse Creek Wildlife Management Area, New Jersey

    Marsh, Meadow, and Grassland Restoration

    Status: Planning and design phase

  7. Stow Creek, New Jersey

    Boat Ramp Restoration

    Status: Planning and design phase

  8. Blackbird Reserve Wildlife Area, Delaware

    Habitat Restoration

    Status: Maintenance phase

  9. and 10. Delaware River, Delaware and New Jersey

    Oyster Reef Creation

    Status: Monitoring phase

Last updated March 26, 2019