PG&E Agrees to $565 Million Settlement for Natural Gas Pipeline Explosion

Pipeline Explosion Settlement

Written by Faith Anderson on September 20, 2013
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PG&E Agrees to $565 Million Settlement for Natural Gas Pipeline Explosion

California’s largest utility company, PG&E, has announced its decision to settle nearly all claims filed over the deadly 2010 pipeline explosion in San Bruno.

As a result of the deadly natural gas pipeline explosion that took place in San Bruno, California three years ago, Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) has agreed to pay a whopping $565 million to settle personal injury, property damage and wrongful death lawsuits filed on behalf of those affected by the explosion. At least 499 individuals brought claims against PG&E in the aftermath of the pipeline explosion, and the multi-million-dollar settlement will resolve nearly all of the claims filed by victims of the disaster, including those who were injured or lost loved ones and those whose property was damaged in the blast. According to the settlement agreement, only two lawsuits out of the 160 filed since the blast still remain unresolved.

Explosion Results in Injuries, Deaths, Property Damage

In September 2010, a natural gas pipeline exploded in San Bruno, California, killing eight people, injuring dozens more and destroying 38 homes, virtually wiping out San Bruno’s Crestmoor neighborhood. An investigation into the cause of the blast revealed that a defective section of pipe had been in place since 1965, that PG&E’s record-keeping practices were inadequate, and that the company promoted a culture that failed to emphasize safety – all of which were found to be contributing factors in the deadly explosion. In March 2012, PG&E reached a $70 million settlement with the city of San Bruno over the blast.

PG&E Executives May Be Charged in Blast

The money for the $565 million settlement will be covered in part by PG&E’s insurance company, but a portion will also come from shareholders, which means taxpayers will not bear any cost of the claims brought against the company. In addition to millions of dollars in settlements with San Bruno and individual claimants, PG&E also faces fines recommended by the California Public Utilities Commission, which could reach $2.25 billion. At this time, prosecutors are also investigating whether PG&E executives should be charged in the San Bruno explosion.

Consult a Knowledgeable Attorney for Legal Help

There have been more than 3,000 gas pipeline accidents over the last 20 years, and the San Bruno blast has sparked serious concerns among municipal and federal officials about the condition of gas pipelines across the United States. If you have suffered injuries or lost a loved one in a pipeline explosion or another devastating accident you believe was caused by the negligence of another person or party, contact a reputable attorney in your area to discuss your legal options. You may have grounds to file a personal injury, wrongful death or property damage lawsuit against the person or party found at-fault in the accident, in order to pursue financial compensation for your losses.

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Posted Under: Accidents, Legal, News
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