(Adds comment from PG&E)
July 30 A federal grand jury for the Northern
District of California charged PG&E Corp on Tuesday
alleging it obstructed the investigation of the National
Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) into the deadly San Bruno
natural gas explosion in 2010.
The indictment alleges that the company provided the NTSB
with a version of a policy outlining the way in which PG&E
addressed manufacturing threats on its gas pipelines during the
investigation that was later withdrawn.
In addition, the indictment charges the company with 27
counts of "knowingly and willfully" violating the Natural Gas
Pipeline Safety Act of 1968, according to a statement from the
U.S. Attorney's Office. (1.usa.gov/1nFKx5l)
A natural gas pipeline explosion in the city just south of
San Francisco destroyed a neighborhood and killed eight people
on Sept. 9, 2010. The National Transportation Safety Board later
blamed the utility's lax approach to pipeline safety and weak
oversight by state and federal regulators.
"We have not yet seen the superseding indictment. However,
based on all of the evidence we have seen to date, we do not
believe that the charges are warranted and that, even where
mistakes were made, employees were acting in good faith to
provide customers with safe and reliable energy," PG&E said in a
PG&E said in March that it expected the U.S. government to
file criminal charges against the company.
The utility has been hit with multiple fines connected to
the disaster and paid $70 million to settle related claims in
(Reporting by Narottam Medhora, Supriya Kurane in Bangalore and
Daniel Levine in San Francisco; Editing by Eric Walsh and