French authorities are bracing for a huge oil slick to hit the country’s coastline after an Italian ship capsized near La Rochelle on Tuesday, March 12.
The container vessel, Grande America, caught fire on Sunday during a trip from Hamburg to Casablanca.
All 27 crew have been rescued, but 2,200 tonnes of fuel has reportedly spilled into the ocean.
A slick 10km (6 miles) long and 1km wide is expected to reach Brittany, northwest France, by 17 March.
Four ships have been sent to limit the spill, and preparations are under way for a clean-up operation on land.
“There is a risk, so we must do everything to reduce it and to reduce the impact of pollution of our coasts,” Environment Minister François de Rugy told BFM news channel.
Read more on BBC.