Underwater vehicle to inspect damaged Great Lakes oil pipes

FILE - This Feb. 11, 2014 aerial file photo shows a view of the Mackinac Bridge, which spans a 5-mile-wide freshwater channel called the Straits of Mackinac that separates Michigan's upper and lower peninsulas. Officials say hundreds of gallons of potentially toxic coolant fluid have leaked from electric power cables in the waterway that links Lake Huron and Lake Michigan. (Keith King/Traverse City Record-Eagle via AP, Pool, File)

The company that owns twin oil pipelines beneath the waterway that connects Lake Huron and Lake Michigan is preparing to launch an underwater vehicle to inspect damage that might have been caused by a ship's anchor.

A spokesman for Enbridge Inc. said Monday the remote-controlled vehicle will examine the submerged pipes in the Straits of Mackinac. They are part of Line 5, which carries 23 million gallons (87 million liters) of crude oil daily between Superior, Wisconsin, and Sarnia, Ontario.

Enbridge temporarily shut down the line over the weekend, blaming a power outage at its Superior terminal.

Officials said dents in both pipes might have been caused by "vessel activity," also believed responsible for damaging two electric cables that leaked 600 gallons (2,271 liters) of coolant fluid into the straits.

close video ad
Unmutetoggle ad audio on off