PG&E Says it Misclassified California Gas Pipelines

January 19, 2012

Pacific Gas & Electric Co. officials acknowledge the company wrongly classified hundreds of miles of natural gas transmission lines – the same type of line that ruptured in the deadly San Bruno explosion.

In a document filed Tuesday with the California Public Utilities Commission, PG&E says it misclassified more than 300 miles of transmission lines, and as a result had run some segments at higher pressure levels than recommended by federal safety authorities.

California regulators ordered PG&E to review lines running through densely populated areas after the Sept. 9, 2010 San Bruno blast, which killed eight people and destroyed 38 homes.

Federal law requires utilities to perform more stringent inspections on lines in highly populated areas. The company originally said in June that it failed to properly classify 172 miles of pipelines.

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