Headlines: Oil spills

Oil spills are very harmful to the environment and people who depend on the sea for their income. An oil spill in Mexico in 1979 still affects fishermen today.

Listen out for these words:

  • tough
  • crippling
  • escape

And try to follow this report as you hear the programme.

جهازك لا يدعم تشغيل الفيديو

“Every morning they return, with the hard won fruits of a night at sea. The living’s tough in Champaton, on Mexico’s Gulf coast. It’s etched on the faces of these lifelong fishermen, along with memories of a crippling oil spill. One of them says: ‘We had to fish further and further away to escape the oil. Eventually the fish were too far for us to catch them.’ In 1979 the sea burned; oil on water on fire after a blow out on the well Ixtoc 1. ”

Can you catch the meaning of the words?

Here are some examples of how they can be used:


* I can't eat this steak! It's as tough as old boots!

* The police are very tough on crime.


* High prices can have a crippling effect on tourism.

* The death of John's sister had a crippling effect on him.


* The countryside is a great place to escape the noisy city.

* Most modern buildings have an escape route, just in case there is a fire.

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