Two icebreakers are working to help an oil tanker get through the Northumberland Strait today.

The 181-metre Acadian left Halifax bound for Charlottetown, but ice and wind conditions have made it impossible to get through.

Paul Veber is the Coast Guard's Superintendent of ice operations for the Atlantic Region.

"So it's actually been the most-challenging ice conditions we've had anywhere in Atlantic Canada. Because of that we've had to send the heavier ice breakers into the Northumberland Strait. The heavier ice breaker will escort the ship through the Northumberland Strait and then the Cornwallis will escort the tanker right into Charlottetown," he said.

Veber said it will take a full day for the icebreakers to clear a path to Charlottetown Harbour.

The icebreakers will escort the tanker back out to sea on Sunday.