Tropical Storm Alex started forming a little over a week ago. It hit the Yucatan Peninsula and lost some of it’s strength while travelling over land but when it reached the seas it started to gain strength over the warm waters. As of today Alex is officially the first hurricane of the season. At the moment it’s classified as Category 1 hurricane and is the first June hurricane in the Atlantic basin in 15 years, since Allison in 1995.
The biggest concern since Alex was first spotted was that it would hit the oil spill from the Deepwater Horizon rig. Fortunately it will not hit the site directly and is moving towards Mexico and Texas coast but the strong winds and waves generated by the hurricane is interfering with the clean-up process. The booms are the most affected, at the moment, as the waves just push the oil over it and under it, making it useless. People working on the on the clean-up have been evacuated and they have had to stop the controlled burns of the crude oil on the oceans surface and cancel all the flights spraying dispersant chemicals until the weather have cleared. Unfortunately that means the drilling of the relief oil well at the Deepwater Horizon is also put on hold until the winds and water condition have improved.
There is also the concern in the rise of water levels as the oil is pushed unto the coast lines even reaching the roads. Cars have been detoured to avoid the oily water that are splashing onshore. The whole stretch from Southern Louisiana and the Mississippi are being watched for floods as the tides rises.
In the face of all the extent of the disaster the US State Department has stated that it will accept offers of help from 22 countries one of which is Japan; including two high-speed skimmers and fire containment boom from Japan the department said in a statement.