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Lucy is a senior staff photographer for Reuters. This is her multimedia blog about her assignments and travels

Refugio Oil Spill
Saturday, May 23rd, 2015

WIDER IMAGE PHOTOS

A man watches an oil slick wash up on a beach along the coast of Refugio State Beach in Goleta, California, United States, May 19, 2015. A pipeline ruptured along the scenic California coastline on Tuesday, spilling some 21,000 gallons (79,000 liters) of oil into the ocean and on beaches before it could be secured, a U.S. Coast Guard spokeswoman said. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson - RTX1DPTK

A man watches an oil slick wash up on a beach along the coast of Refugio State Beach in Goleta, California, United States, May 19, 2015. A pipeline ruptured along the scenic California coastline on Tuesday, spilling some 21,000 gallons (79,000 liters) of oil into the ocean and on beaches before it could be secured, a U.S. Coast Guard spokeswoman said.

Up to 2,500 barrels of petroleum gushed onto San Refugio State Beach and into the Pacific about 32 km west of Santa Barbara when an underground pipeline that runs along the coastal highway inexplicably burst.

Workers clean up an oil slick along the coast of Refugio State Beach in Goleta, California, United States, May 21, 2015. Up to 2,500 barrels (105,000 gallons) of petroleum, according to latest estimates, gushed onto San Refugio State Beach and into the Pacific about 20 miles (32 km) west of Santa Barbara on Tuesday when an underground pipeline that runs along the coastal highway inexplicably burst. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson - RTX1E1IT

Workers clean up an oil slick along the coast of Refugio State Beach in Goleta, California, United States, May 21, 2015.

Environmental activists and local officials said it could turn out to be the largest oil spill in 46 years to hit the ecologically sensitive but energy-rich Santa Barbara shoreline, about 200 km northwest of Los Angeles.

The spill zone lies at the edge of a national marine sanctuary and state-designated underwater preserve teeming with whales, dolphin, sea lions, some 60 species of sea birds and more than 500 species of fish. The surrounding waters also are shared by nearly two dozen offshore oil platforms.

William McConnaughey, 56, who drove from San Diego to help shovel oil off the beach, stands in an oil slick in bare feet along the coast of Refugio State Beach in Goleta, California, United States, May 20, 2015. A pipeline ruptured along the scenic California coastline on Tuesday, spilling some 21,000 gallons (79,000 liters) of oil into the ocean and on beaches before it could be secured, a U.S. Coast Guard spokeswoman said. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson - RTX1DV3J

William McConnaughey, 56, who drove from San Diego to help shovel oil off the beach, stands in an oil slick in bare feet along the coast of Refugio State Beach.

Volunteer William McConnaughey, 56, who drove from San Diego to help shovel oil off the beach, stretches out his hands after carrying buckets of oil from an oil slick along the coast of Refugio State Beach in Goleta, California, United States, May 20, 2015. A pipeline ruptured along the scenic California coastline on Tuesday, spilling some 21,000 gallons (79,000 liters) of oil into the ocean and on beaches before it could be secured, a U.S. Coast Guard spokeswoman said. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson - RTX1DV5Y

Volunteer William McConnaughey, 56, who drove from San Diego to help shovel oil off the beach, stretches out his hands after carrying buckets of oil from an oil slick along the coast of Refugio State Beach in Goleta.

A lobster covered in oil is seen along the coast of Refugio State Beach in Goleta, California, United States, May 20, 2015. A pipeline ruptured along the scenic California coastline on Tuesday, spilling some 21,000 gallons (79,000 liters) of oil into the ocean and on beaches before it could be secured, a U.S. Coast Guard spokeswoman said. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson - RTX1DTXN

A lobster covered in oil is seen along the coast of Refugio State Beach.

An oil slick is seen along the coast of Refugio State Beach in Goleta, California, United States, May 19, 2015. A pipeline ruptured along the scenic California coastline on Tuesday, spilling some 21,000 gallons (79,000 liters) of oil into the ocean and on beaches before it could be secured, a U.S. Coast Guard spokeswoman said. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson - RTX1DPUD

An oil slick from a ruptured pipeline is seen along the coast of Refugio State Beach in Goleta.

An oil slick is seen along the coast of Refugio State Beach in Goleta, California, United States, May 19, 2015. A pipeline ruptured along the scenic California coastline on Tuesday, spilling some 21,000 gallons (79,000 liters) of oil into the ocean and on beaches before it could be secured, a U.S. Coast Guard spokeswoman said. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson - RTX1DPS3

Birds covered in oil fly in front of an oil-drilling platform above an oil slick along the coast of Refugio State Beach in Goleta, California, United States, May 20, 2015. A pipeline ruptured along the scenic California coastline on Tuesday, spilling some 21,000 gallons (79,000 liters) of oil into the ocean and on beaches before it could be secured, a U.S. Coast Guard spokeswoman said. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson - RTX1DUBY

Birds covered in oil fly in front of an oil-drilling platform above an oil slick along the coast of Refugio State Beach.

A bird covered in oil flies over an oil slick along the coast of Refugio State Beach in Goleta, California, United States, May 20, 2015. A pipeline ruptured along the scenic California coastline on Tuesday, spilling some 21,000 gallons (79,000 liters) of oil into the ocean and on beaches before it could be secured, a U.S. Coast Guard spokeswoman said. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson - RTX1DUBH

A bird covered in oil flies over an oil slick.

A pelican covered in oil is seen along the coast of Refugio State Beach in Goleta, California, United States, May 20, 2015. A pipeline ruptured along the scenic California coastline on Tuesday, spilling some 21,000 gallons (79,000 liters) of oil into the ocean and on beaches before it could be secured, a U.S. Coast Guard spokeswoman said. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson - RTX1DVAK

A pelican covered in oil is seen along the coast of Refugio State Beach.

A lobster covered in oil is seen along the coast of Refugio State Beach in Goleta, California, United States, May 20, 2015. A pipeline ruptured along the scenic California coastline on Tuesday, spilling some 21,000 gallons (79,000 liters) of oil into the ocean and on beaches before it could be secured, a U.S. Coast Guard spokeswoman said. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson - RTX1DTNA

A lobster covered in oil.

A fish covered in oil is seen along the coast of Refugio State Beach in Goleta, California, United States, May 20, 2015. A pipeline ruptured along the scenic California coastline on Tuesday, spilling some 21,000 gallons (79,000 liters) of oil into the ocean and on beaches before it could be secured, a U.S. Coast Guard spokeswoman said. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson - RTX1DTXG

A fish covered in oil.

An octopus spattered in oil is seen along the coast of Refugio State Beach in Goleta, California, United States, May 20, 2015. A pipeline ruptured along the scenic California coastline on Tuesday, spilling some 21,000 gallons (79,000 liters) of oil into the ocean and on beaches before it could be secured, a U.S. Coast Guard spokeswoman said. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson - RTX1DUBV

An octopus spattered in oil.

A shrimp covered in oil is seen along the coast of Refugio State Beach in Goleta, California, United States, May 20, 2015. A pipeline ruptured along the scenic California coastline on Tuesday, spilling some 21,000 gallons (79,000 liters) of oil into the ocean and on beaches before it could be secured, a U.S. Coast Guard spokeswoman said. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson - RTX1DUBI

A shrimp covered in oil.

A shrimp covered in oil is seen along the coast of Refugio State Beach in Goleta, California, United States, May 20, 2015. A pipeline ruptured along the scenic California coastline on Tuesday, spilling some 21,000 gallons (79,000 liters) of oil into the ocean and on beaches before it could be secured, a U.S. Coast Guard spokeswoman said. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson - RTX1DUBO

A shrimp covered in oil.

A clean up worker holds a box of sea creatures killed by an oil slick along the coast of Refugio State Beach in Goleta, California, United States, May 21, 2015. As much as 2,500 barrels (105,000 gallons) of crude oil, according to latest estimates, gushed onto San Refugio State Beach and into the Pacific west of Santa Barbara when an underground pipeline running parallel to a coastal highway there inexplicably burst on Tuesday morning. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson - RTX1E1I1

A box of sea creatures killed by the oil slick.

Buckets of oil volunteers carried from an oil slick sit along the coast of Refugio State Beach in Goleta, California, United States, May 20, 2015. A pipeline ruptured along the scenic California coastline on Tuesday, spilling some 21,000 gallons (79,000 liters) of oil into the ocean and on beaches before it could be secured, a U.S. Coast Guard spokeswoman said. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson - RTX1DV80

Buckets of oil volunteers carried from an oil slick sit along the coast of Refugio State Beach.

Volunteers fill buckets of oil from an oil slick along the coast of Refugio State Beach in Goleta, California, United States, May 20, 2015. A pipeline ruptured along the scenic California coastline on Tuesday, spilling some 21,000 gallons (79,000 liters) of oil into the ocean and on beaches before it could be secured, a U.S. Coast Guard spokeswoman said. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson - RTX1DV4E

Volunteers fill buckets of oil from the oil slick.

A worker climbs on rocks covered in oil as he cleans up an oil slick along the coast of Refugio State Beach in Goleta, California, United States, May 21, 2015. As much as 2,500 barrels (105,000 gallons) of crude oil, according to latest estimates, gushed onto San Refugio State Beach and into the Pacific west of Santa Barbara when an underground pipeline running parallel to a coastal highway there inexplicably burst on Tuesday morning. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson - RTX1E1I2

A worker climbs on rocks covered in oil as he cleans up the oil slick.

Workers clean up an oil slick along the coast of Refugio State Beach in Goleta, California, United States, May 21, 2015. Up to 2,500 barrels (105,000 gallons) of petroleum, according to latest estimates, gushed onto San Refugio State Beach and into the Pacific about 20 miles (32 km) west of Santa Barbara on Tuesday when an underground pipeline that runs along the coastal highway inexplicably burst. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson - RTX1E1IR

Workers clean up the oil slick along the coast of Refugio State Beach.

Staff and volunteers work to clean oil off a brown pelican at the International Bird Rescue center in San Pedro, Los Angeles, California, United States, May 22, 2015. Up to 2,500 barrels (105,000 gallons) of crude petroleum, according to latest estimates, gushed onto San Refugio State Beach and into the Pacific about 20 miles (32 km) west of Santa Barbara on Tuesday when an underground pipeline that runs along the coastal highway burst. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson - RTX1E6P5

Staff and volunteers work to clean oil off a brown pelican at the International Bird Rescue center in San Pedro.

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