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Five Families Sue Over San Bruno Pipeline Blast

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Flames several stories high roar through a San Bruno neighborhood, following the gas line explosion September 9th. (AP)

Flames several stories high roar through a San Bruno neighborhood, following the gas line explosion September 9th. (AP)

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SACRAMENTO (KCBS) — Five wrongful conduct lawsuits have been filed against Pacific Gas and Electric Company following the San Bruno pipeline explosion.

Susan Bullis, who lost her husband, son and mother in the deadly blaze on September 9th, was among those filing in San Mateo County Superior Court on Tuesday.

KCBS’ Margie Shafer Reports:

The lawsuits come as the California Public Utilities Commission was grilled in Sacramento at a public safety hearing.

State Senator Dean Florez took Richard Clark, the director of the consumer protection and safety division of the California PUC, to task for having too few people to inspect the pipelines.

“Nine staff for the entire state. How many staff do you have in the marketing department at the PUC?” Florez asked.

In 2008, a gasline explosion in Rancho Cordova killed one person.

“Did you put more folks on PG&E given that there was a gasline explosion that killed one person?” Florez asked. “Did you move folks to look specifically at their lines?”

PG&E has yet to be fined by the PUC for the explosion in Rancho Cordova.

The utility was given $5 million for pipeline replacement and the San Bruno line was identified. That line was not replaced, as the utility deemed other lines to be a higher priority.

(© 2010 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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