California Investigates PG&E Pipeline Safety Practices

February 15, 2012

California utility regulators are investigating Pacific Gas & Electric Co.’s pipeline safety practices after two welders claimed that some of the company’s lines contain weld defects and that repairs have not been made properly.

The California Public Utilities Commission on Monday said it is following up on reports from welders with the United Association of Plumbers, Pipe Fitters and Steamfitters who raised the concerns after working on tests of PG&E pipelines in 2011.

CPUC’s Consumer Protection and Safety Division has already investigated claims that PG&E found leaks in some distribution pipelines but failed to make timely repairs. That investigation had thus far found no evidence to support those claims.

A Sept. 9, 2010 explosion on a PG&E transmission line in San Bruno killed eight people and destroyed 38 homes.

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