"Several smaller oil spills before the Exxon Valdez could have warned of a system breakdown. But a former Senior Lab Technician with Alyeska, Erlene Blake, told our investigators that management routinely ordered her to toss out test samples of water evidencing spilled oil. She was ordered to refill the test tubes with a bucket of clean sea water called, 'The Miracle Barrel'.
In a secret meeting in April 1988, Alyeska Vice-President T.L. Polasek confidentially warned the oil group executives that, because Alyeska had never purchased promised safety equipment, it was simply 'not possible' to contain an oil spill past the Valdez Narrows -- exactly where the Exxon Valdez ran aground 10 months later."
- Greg Palast, 'Court Rewards Exxon for Valdez Oil Spill', 26 June 2008.