CALGARY, Alberta (Reuters) - Enbridge Inc shut down its 300,000 barrel per day Line 9 crude oil pipeline on Monday after three protesters locked themselves to equipment at a valve site in Quebec, a company spokesman said.
Enbridge spokesman Graham White said the protesters broke into a fenced site about 80 kilometers (50 miles) west of Montreal at around 8 a.m. EST (1300 GMT) by cutting the locks, then tampered with a pipeline valve and locked themselves to the equipment.
Enbridge shut the pipeline, which runs from Sarnia, Ontario, to Montreal, Quebec, as a precaution and the protesters were removed by police.
White said Enbridge expected to be able to restart the line later on Monday and the company did not anticipate any impact on deliveries to customers.
White did not specify the motive behind Monday's protest. But Canadian pipeline companies have faced fierce opposition to new projects from environmental groups and First Nations, many of whom would like to stop Canada's vast oil reserves from being developed.
Line 9 was recently reversed to carry Western Canadian crude to the east coast.
Reporting by Nia Williams; Editing by Tom Brown