Line 5 inspections

Regular examinations of the pipe, both inside and out.

Prevention is a key component of safety at Enbridge. Our proactive inspection program allows us to monitor the fitness of our pipelines from both the inside and the outside.

We take extra precautions on the Line 5 Straits of Mackinac crossing, with regular inspections that make this crossing the most inspected segment of pipe in our entire North American network.

Internal inspections

We use inline inspection (ILI) tools, on a regular basis, to make thorough evaluations of the pipe’s interior and examine those interior walls inch by inch.

These ILI tools use imaging technology, with a level of detail similar to that of MRIs, ultrasound and X-ray technologies in the medical industry. ILI tools alert us to any issues in the pipeline that may require immediate attention, further analysis or maintenance. Data collected from those scans is analyzed by specialized computer programs and expert engineers, and is continually compared to get a full picture of what’s happening in the pipes.

External inspections

We also make regular visual inspections of the exterior of the dual Line 5 pipes traveling along the bottom of the lakebed, using expert divers and/or remote operated vehicle (ROV). These external inspections provide a thorough, detailed look at the exterior of the pipe and its immediate environment (click here to find out more about our span management program).