Back in July 2010, a failure in one of Enbridge Ltd.'s pipelines resulted in about 3 million liters of crude oil being spilled into the Kalamazoo River and a nearby creek, in Michigan, US.
As a direct result of this accident, 50 nearby households had to be evacuated and the people who were allowed to remain in their homes were asked not to drink from their usual water sources until specialists told them that there is no danger in doing so.
Moreover, it took months to clean up the river and the areas in its proximity.
Official reports indicate that cleaning operations required nearly $700 million (approximately €555 million) being spent.
Apparently, it is only just now that US officials have completed their investigation and decided to fine the company with $3,7 million (about €3 million) for the damages done to the environment.
CTV News informs us that the aforementioned amount of money was agreed upon after the US Department of Transportation's Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) identified 24 different ways in which Entbridge Ltd. breached the national standards for transporting dangerous liquids.
Interestingly enough, one of these protocol violations refers to not dealing with corrosion problems that can be traced back to 2004.
Only yesterday, the company's official website reported that Stephen J. Wuori, Enbridge's president and the person in charge of all crude oil and liquids pipeline operations in North America, argued, “Safety has always been core to our operations.”
As well as this, he wished to make it clear that “Enbridge completed a detailed internal investigation of this incident in the fall of 2010 and has made numerous enhancements to the processes and procedures in our control center since the Line 6B accident.”
According to the same source, Enbridge has 30 days to decide whether it chooses to accept the fine or wishes to attack this decision in court.