California wants PG&E resolution

Oct. 11, 2012 at 7:03 AM

SACRAMENTO, Oct. 11 (UPI) -- California utility regulators are eager to resolve issues related to a 2010 natural gas pipeline explosion, a state director said.

A natural gas pipeline operated by Pacific Gas and Electric exploded in September 2010 in San Bruno, Calif., killing eight people and damaging 38 homes. The company could face as much as $200 million in penalties related to the incident.

Michael Peevey, president of the California Public Utilities Commission, told Bloomberg News penalties were something the "public understands," adding he was eager to settle with PG&E by the end of the year.

"It's in everyone's interest that we put this behind us," he was quoted as saying.

A spokeswoman for the company said a universal settlement was something PG&E supported.

In its investigation, the National Transportation Safety Board said that PG&E didn't know what kind of pipe was beneath San Bruno. A defective weld seam was a contributing factor to the explosion.

Attorneys for the survivors of the explosion said PG&E cut short its maintenance budget in the years leading up to the incident.

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