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12 Tragic Images Of The Massive Molasses Spill At Honolulu Harbor

On Monday faulty pipelines leaked as much as 233,000 gallons of molasses into the Honolulu Harbor. The spill is expected to kill thousands of fish and other marine life.

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The molasses spilled from a pipeline on a Matson cargo ship used to load the syrup from storage tanks to ships sailing to California.

Hawaii's Health Department assigned crews to haul away dead marine life, but plans to let the molasses naturally dissipate with the tides and currents. The brown plume in the water is expected to remain visible for weeks and the effects in the harbor will be long-lasting, said marine biologists.



Health officials warned swimmers, surfers, and snorkelers in Hawaii to stay out of the waters near Honolulu after the leak of molasses killed hundreds of fish, potentially attracting sharks.


Dead puffer fish and other marine life are collected in this barrel on the dock fronting Keehi Lagoon. The fish are dying off in large numbers, because the molasses make it difficult for them to breathe.



Underwater video uncovers mass kill from Matson molasses spill in Hawaii



Underwater video uncovers mass kill from Matson molasses spill in Hawaii

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"This is the worst environmental damage to sea life that I have come across, and its fair to say this is a biggie, if not the biggest that we've had to confront in the state of Hawaii," said Gary Gill, deputy director for the Environmental Health Division of the Health Department.


Dead marine life at Keehi Lagoon.


"The smell is horrible."


A dead hammerhead spotted at Keehi Lagoon.

Michelle Broder Van Dyke is a reporter and night editor for BuzzFeed News and is based in Hawaii.

Contact Michelle Broder Van Dyke at

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