House Panel Asks for Inquiry of Pipeline Company That Aided Michigan Spill Victims

MARSHALL, Mich. -- A congressional committee wants the U.S. attorney general to determine whether a pipeline company forced residents to sign forms preventing them from suing in exchange for air conditioners and hotel expenses in the wake of this summer's oil spill in Michigan.

The House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure is asking Eric Holder to investigate the use of the releases by Enbridge Energy Partners.

Enbridge spokeswoman Terri Larson tells The Detroit News for a story Wednesday that the forms don't bar residents from suing the company in the future on another matter.

An Enbridge pipeline ruptured on July 26, releasing more than 800,000 gallons of crude oil into the Kalamazoo River and other southern Michigan waterways.