Primary Source Analysis

Hello Everyone


Being that my disaster happened over 25 years ago some of the primary source information is not as good as it could be today. Which is slightly frustrating not having the tweets or the Facebook posts from those who are in the moment and struggling. We do not get these short bursts of feelings about what is happening.

But when looking deeper into the primary sources I was able to find a documentary on YouTube featuring some of the people who were within these small communities at the time of the spill happening. This documentary is interesting because they compliant by day of the disaster, which allows people to pull back to memories that they have of the day.

Within this documentary there is a women who is a pilot or very close to one as she went to the airport in Cordova and got into a plane right way. With Tankers passing through the sound on a daily bases was normal to everyone, so this women did hear about it in the early morning before the sun rose. She flew over the tanker and the spill area and the way she describes it is horrific for anyone who cares about the environment. She speaks of this blood red tanker in the middle of a black inky stain and above it is this cloud of blue haze. She than speaks about it being 9 hours after the incident and not having any of the promised recovery equipment on the water that was promised to be within 6 hours. With this being an interview instead of a journal entry, we are able to hear her voice and the pitch and mood change. This woman’s name is Riki Ott and she is a predominate voice within the documentary.

Those who lived within these communities and were made promises by the companies that were transporting oil through the Sound were angry that these promises had been broken. Mike Webber is a fisherman who fishes within the Sound. He speaks to the number of people who left the small community and how the fishing will never recover form the oil spill. He speaks to how the community is depressed due to the oil spill affecting how they lived their lives so greatly.

When we study and look at disasters much of the effort and resources that are put towards reporting on the fact instead of the experiences to those that are suffering so deeply. Those people are given a voice for a very short time in a news paper, but with the Exxon Valdez and these communities being so remote and not having any accommodations within the communities the reports skipped over them. With this documentary they were able to find some of the people who wanted to speak about the disaster but it is very different than if this disaster would have happened today. Many of those who were affected by the Exxon Valdez Oil spill have passed away, without allowing there stories to be heard. This is a shortfall of the media and the larger communities because when looking back no one cares about the facts because they are common knowledge, people care about other people and what happened to them.

– Alexis

The link to the source:

Please note that this sources is very long and I only analyzed the parts that were relevant.



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