SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) – A fish-propelling tube could restore salmon populations to portions of a Washington river that has not seen the species in 90 years.

The Spokesman-Review reported Friday that if the salmon cannon is approved by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, it could restore populations to native waters in the Upper Columbia.

Officials say the system is expected to give fish a detour to avoid dams when traveling upstream to reproduce.

Wildlife experts say dams and other factors threaten salmon, and the cannon can serve as a safe alternative during the journey.

Officials say Bellevue-based Whooshh Innovations created the tube that can cost up to $4 million.

Experts say the system does not cause harm to the fish and can redirect predatory and invasive species to other portions of the river.

Information from: The Spokesman-Review, http://www.spokesman.com