Line 5 in Michigan: Consider the alternative

Each day, Michigan and the region depend on Enbridge to safely move up to 540,000 barrels of light crude oil, light synthetic crude oil and NGL through Line 5.

Consider the alternative. If we were to transport the same amount of product by tanker truck, an estimated 2,100 trucks would need to head east every day from Superior and travel across Michigan to transport what’s carried by Line 5. That’s the equivalent of 90 trucks an hour leaving our Superior Terminal.

Map of tanker traffic on Michigan roads
(Click on the above image to enlarge)

Enbridge’s Line 5 underground pipeline was built in 1953 to remove oil-carrying tanker traffic from the Great Lakes. It also eases roadway and air emissions by avoiding oil transportation by truck and rail.

At the Straits of Mackinac, the Line 5 crossing features an exceptional and incredibly durable enamel coating, and pipe walls that are three times as thick—a minimum of 0.812 inches—as those of a typical pipeline. And by design, the Line 5 crossing is located in an area of the Straits that minimizes potential corrosion due to lack of oxygen and the cold water temperature. This setting contributes to preserving the integrity of Line 5, which has enabled it to serve Michigan safely and reliably for more than six decades.

We’ve been safely operating Line 5 for more than 65 years, thanks to that design durability and an aggressive prevention program of regular inspections, robust maintenance and 24/7 system monitoring—including an additional suite of extra safety measures as it crosses the Straits of Mackinac.

The products moved on Line 5 heat homes and businesses, fuel vehicles, and power industry in the state of Michigan. Line 5 supplies 65% of propane demand in the Upper Peninsula, and 55% of Michigan's statewide propane needs.