Mathematics Faculty Scholarship

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date


Publication Title

Proceedings of the Congrès 2009 de la SSC


Congrès de la SSC, Vancouver, British Columbia


Offshore Oil Spills, Gulf of Mexico, Weibull Distribution, Maximum Likelihood


An extensive study [Eschenbach and Harper (2006)] of offshore oil spills in the Gulf of Mexico with extensions to the northern seas of Alaska involved the estimation of the likelihood of oil spill volumes in the Gulf of Mexico for both pipeline and platform spills. This paper develops both maximum likelihood based reliability and percentile confidence intervals for the 3- parameter Weibull distribution. The statistical aspects are discussed along with applications of developed Excel VBA functions. The Excel routines are available free on the web at The functions are illustrated with Gulf of Mexico oil spill data.



Peer Reviewed




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