Michigan official: Tugboat damaged Great Lakes pipelines

MACKINAW CITY, Mich. - The U.S. Coast Guard says it's still looking into what caused damage to underwater electric cables and oil pipelines in the channel that connects Lake Huron and Lake Michigan.

Cmdr. Shaun Edwards declined to comment Tuesday on an announcement by Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette that his office was bringing civil action against VanEnkevort Tug & Barge of Escanaba, Michigan. Schuette says a company vessel dragged an anchor along the Straits on Mackinac on April 1.

Edwards says Schuette's move was separate from the investigation led by the Coast Guard and includes other federal, state and tribal agencies.

Edwards says that after the investigation is finished, any mariner who acted wrongly could lose credentials or be referred to the Department of Justice for a criminal investigation.

Officials say two underwater remote vehicles will examine the damaged cables and pipelines.

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