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PG&E Arraignment

Monday, April 21, 2014
9:00 AM - 11:00 AM
Event Type:
Adrienne Fong
Location Details:
450 Golden Gate Ave. (between Polk & Larkin Streets)
San Francisco

Gather - 9:00am for a street presence outside 450 Golden Gate Ave.

Court Arraignment- 9:30am Federal District Court, 450 Golden Gate Ave.,
Courtroom G on 15th Floor

PG&E is being arraigned - pleading NOT GUILTY to 12 felony indictments for gross negligence in the 2008 San Bruno disaster, in which there was a loss of life.

PG&E also operates the Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant in
San Luis Obispo (SLO) which is in a seismic active zone. PG&E has been ordered to to run seismic studies of the area around Diablo.

Could Diablo Canyon be our next Fukushima?

Please Bring Signs - suggested messages


RE: Arraignment - allow time to go through security; no signs allowed.

Added to the calendar on Fri, Apr 18, 2014 12:08PM
§Protest Criminal Activity By PG&E Bosses & Executives-Jail Them Now
by No Nukes Action Committee
Federal District Courthouse
450 Golden Gate Ave in San Francisco
After Press Conference People will go to the trial
Courtroom G on the 15th floor

4/21 San Bruno & Diablo Canyon Nuclear Reactor - both aging infrastructure, both treacherous for the public, both under PG&E mismanagement!
Federal District Courthouse
450 Golden Gate Ave in San Francisco
Courtroom G on the 15th floor

San Bruno and Diablo Canyon Nuclear Reactor - both aging infrastructure, both treacherous for the public, both under PG&E mismanagement! PROTEST PG&E MONDAY in SF!
Monday, April 21, at 9:30 AM
PGE is finally being arraigned, pleading "not guilty" to 12 felony indictments for gross negligence re: the San Bruno fire/disaster.
Yikes, the same criminal clowns operate the Diablo Canyon nuclear reactor!

Federal District Courthouse
450 Golden Gate Ave in San Francisco
Courtroom G on the 15th floor

PROTEST outside. Bring signs please. (We might then march one block to the CPUC.)

Here is some background on the San Bruno explosion from the National Transportation Safety Board:

National Transportation Safety Board (2011)

RE: Pacific Gas and Electric Company Natural Gas Transmission Pipeline Rupture and Fire, San Bruno, California, September 9, 2010

Pipeline Accident Report NTSB/PAR 11/01 Washington, DC.

On September 9, 2010, about 6:11 p.m. Pacific daylight time, a 30 inch diameter segment of an intrastate natural gas transmission pipeline known as Line 132, owned and operated by the Pacific Gas and Electric Company, ruptured in a residential area in San Bruno, California. The rupture occurred at mile point 39.28 of Line 132, at the intersection of Earl Avenue and Glenview Drive. The rupture produced a crater about 72 feet long by 26 feet wide. The section of pipe that ruptured, which was about 28 feet long and weighed about 3,000 pounds, was found 100 feet south of the crater. The Pacific Gas and Electric Company estimated that 47.6 million standard cubic feet of natural gas was released. The released natural gas ignited, resulting in a fire that destroyed 38 homes and damaged 70. Eight people were killed, many were injured, and many more were evacuated from the area.
4/21 San Bruno & Diablo Canyon Nuclear Reactor - both aging infrastructure, both treacherous for the public, both under PG&E mismanagement! PROTEST PG&E MONDAY in SF!

In case you don't already know PG&E's history of abuse, here are some highlights: (these links are from 2011, thanks to Ellen O.)

San Bruno gas pipeline explosions, resulting in deaths, injury, and destruction of homes.
• PG&E lied about pipeline inspections
• whistleblowers harassed
• NTSB full report
Smart Meters, with serious problems including health impacts, electrical fire and explosion dangers, interference with electronics, privacy invasion and surveillance, hacking and cybersecurity risks, remote disconnection of power, overbilling, and more
Diablo Canyon – safety violations, built astride earthquake faults, impacts to marine life and neighbors. This hazardous plant needs to be shut down, and the spent fuel housed in dry cask storage.
Acoustic seismic testing – this dangerous “testing” would maim or kill marine life from zoe plankton to whales, to test for faults already well-documented. It has been halted for now, butPG&E may come back with additional proposals
Hinkley & Kettleman Hills – toxic hexavalent chromium contamination of groundwater.PG&E went so far as to hire a firm to falsify scientific data to win their lawsuit. PG&E lost in Hinkley.
• Erin Brockovich film
Electromagnetic radiation – health risks include leukemia, and other cancers, especially in children. Magnetic fields as low as 2 milligauss are a cancer risk, yet high voltage lines are near schools and residential areas. Also problems with ground currents and “dirty” power.
• Paul Brodeur – Currents of Death – cover-up through the World Health Organization EMF Project and Director Michael Repacholi – dirty electricity
Fracking in Pennsylvania – health problems, pet and livestock deaths

PG&E records raise concerns about pipeline safety and retaliated against IBEW Local 1245 whistleblowers on health and safety
PG&E records raise concerns about pipeline safety
Jaxon Van Derbeken
Published 10:50 pm, Tuesday, August 20, 2013


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Pacific Gas and Electric Co. used flawed documents to improperly declare two Peninsula natural-gas pipelines safe, state regulators say - raising questions about whether the company has fixed record-keeping issues that contributed to the 2010 San Bruno disaster.

The company took several months to disclose problems on major transmission lines in San Carlos and Millbrae, then did so in what a pair of administrative law judges for the California Public Utilities Commission described as a deceptively innocuous filing the day before the Fourth of July.

"PG&E appears to be revealing a substantial error," wrote the administrative law judges,Karen Clopton and Maribeth Bushey, and masking it as a "routine correction."

They said PG&E's actions "could be seen as an attempt to mislead the commission and the public on the significance of this new information." They are threatening to levy hundreds of thousands of dollars in fines against the company for violating commission rules.

PG&E officials said there was no attempt to mislead regulators and that the company had made the state aware of the problem well before the actual filing. They also said Peninsula residents had nothing to fear because of the newly uncovered problems with the pipelines.

San Bruno factor
The utility's flawed records were a major factor in the September 2010 pipeline explosion in San Bruno that killed eight people and destroyed 38 homes. PG&E records inaccurately described the line's characteristics, leading the company not to run tests that could have found the flaw that eventually led to the blast.

Federal and state investigators found that PG&E had similarly inaccurate or nonexistent records for much of its more than 1,000 miles of urban gas transmission lines. The company faces up to $2 billion in possible fines and other penalties for record-keeping problems and other violations related to the disaster.

One of the safety changes PG&E made in the disaster's aftermath was lowering the pressure on nearby Peninsula lines while it verified the accuracy of their records. Those pipes included a backbone line that runs from Milpitas to San Francisco, called Line 101, and a connector between that pipe and the line that blew up in San Bruno.

In 2011, PG&E declared the records for both lines were accurate and sought to boost the pressure back to pre-disaster levels.

Problems uncovered
Then last fall, when they dug up the connector line in San Carlos to repair a minor leak, PG&E workers discovered that the pipe was of lesser quality than company records indicated.

The records said the pipe, known as Line 147, had robust welded seams or no seams at all - meaning there was little or no risk they could fail and lead to a disastrous explosion, which is what happened in San Bruno. In fact, workers found, there were several stretches of pipe that had a problematic type of welded seam.

Pressure too high
For Line 101, PG&E said it belatedly realized last year that it had improperly relied on a 1989 water-pressure test to establish the line's strength in Millbrae. It turned out that PG&E had long been running the line at too high a pressure for an urban area.

The company made both admissions in a July 3 filing with the Public Utilities Commission that described the problems as data "errata," alarming the administrative law judges.

"The continuing inaccuracy of PG&E's records and the happenstance means by which this most recent instance of erroneous records was discovered" are troubling, the judges said in an order that PG&E explain its conduct before regulators.

Submitting the filing just before the Fourth of July, they added, "raises questions" because PG&E's record-keeping practices continue to be "an extraordinarily controversial issue" and the subject of intense public interest.

They told PG&E officials to appear at a hearing Sept. 6 at which the judges could recommend fines of $50,000 apiece for as many as five rules violations governing submissions to the commission.

Commissioner Mike Florio said that although the public did not appear to be at risk from the Peninsula lines, PG&E's revelation "has caused a great deal of concern" among regulators about the reliability of the company's other records.

State Sen. Jerry Hill, a San Mateo Democrat whose district includes the devastated San Bruno neighborhood, wrote to PG&E President Chris Johns noting that the company has vouched for the safety of "thousands of miles of California pipeline" since the 2010 explosion.

"If not all of those records are accurate," Hill asked, "how do we know that those pipelines are safe?"

PG&E reassures
PG&E's Jesus Soto, head of gas transmission integrity management, said Line 147 had passed a pressure test in 2011. That "gives us comfort that we are acting as a prudent operator and we do not have a public safety issue," he said.

The company has been running Line 147 at a reduced level since discovering what the pipe was actually made of, and plans to continue doing so until it replaces parts of the line, Soto said.

As for Line 101, PG&E has reduced pressure through Millbrae and has no plans to boost it again until the segment in question is replaced by 2015, Soto said.

Greg Snapper, a company spokesman, insisted that PG&E first approached utilities commission staffers about the problems in February. The two sides had been in talks before the PG&E filing last month, he said.

Critics said the latest wrangling over records is more of the same.

"They are supposed to have complete, traceable, verifiable records, but they don't," saidRichard Kuprewicz, a pipeline safety expert in Redmond, Wash. "Nothing has changed."

Claudia Nadalin, a resident of Howard Avenue in San Carlos who lives a few hundred feet from Line 147, said the city should call a town meeting to discuss the latest revelations.

"It's such a dangerous thing," she said. "Not to have that information accurate is disturbing."

Jaxon Van Derbeken is a San Francisco Chronicle staff writer. E-mail:jvanderbeken [at]

PG&E workers say safety warnings ignored

By Steve Johnson
San Jose Mercury News
© Copyright 2011, Bay Area News Group
Posted: 08/08/2011 06:44:04 AM PDT
Updated: 08/08/2011 06:44:13 AM PDT

Click photo to enlarge

Steve Segale, a gas crew welding foreman & inspector gas operations,... ( Nhat V. Meyer )

PG&E repeatedly ignored safety concerns raised by its employees in the years before the deadly San Bruno explosion, and the workers were sometimes punished for speaking up, according to lawsuits against the utility and interviews with the workers.
James Redeker, whose job was to look for fraud and other misconduct as the company's manager of investigations, said he was laid off when he complained about "potentially explosive gas leaks" and falsified records. Steve Segale, a gas-crew welding foreman, believes he lost out on lucrative overtime because he complained about the same problems.
And when Mike Wiseman, a union safety leader, raised red flags about dangerous gas-line working conditions, he said the utility detained him in a hotel overnight, accused him of being "unstable" and made him submit to a psychiatric evaluation.
The workers interviewed by this newspaper describe a pervasive corporate culture where employees were discouraged from reporting safety problems and feared retaliation if they did. Their allegations raise serious questions about PG&E's ability to make its culture more safety-oriented -- as a state-appointed expert panel recently said it must -- after the Sept. 9 San Bruno blast, which killed eight people.
PG&E declined to comment on the employees' charges -- some of which have never been publicly revealed -- because they constitute personnel matters, according to company spokesman David Eisenhauer.

He insisted, however, that "we absolutely do not tolerate retaliation of any kind. We absolutely encourage any employee to raise concerns at any time."

But at PG&E, many workers are afraid to speak out, according to Segale, 51.
"They're terrified," he said. "They're going to be branded 'not a team player.' "
Better safe than sorry
Though it's not unusual for a public utility to be accused of wrongdoing by disgruntled employees, the companies had better thoroughly examine the allegations and not just dismiss them out of hand, said Anthony Sabino, a law professor at St. John's University in New York, who has followed the San Bruno disaster.
"If the claim reveals a genuine problem, good lord, do something about it before somebody gets hurt," he said. "You can't let these things cascade into disaster."
Yet Segale contends PG&E dragged its heels before starting a major probe into its mishandling of natural gas leaks.
According to records obtained by The Utility Reform Network, a consumer group that is often critical of PG&E, the company in 2007 found "deficiencies" in the way some gas leaks had been handled and that company records had been falsified. The documents were vague about the nature of the deficiencies. But the problems were serious enough to prompt the company to retrain many of its workers and fire others, including some supervisors.
PG&E representatives told this newspaper that the utility discovered the problem after Segale and two other employees complained about it during a 2007 shareholders meeting. A year later, at the next shareholders meeting, PG&E CEO Peter Darbee praised the workers for communicating "their concerns," according to a PG&E transcript of the meeting. "It's unfortunate," he added, "that those employees had to raise it to senior management."
Nothing new?
Workers say they had warned the company long before that.
One of them was Segale. He said in an interview that he complained in 2005 to a company ethics hot line and to PG&E's fraud investigator, Redeker, that his boss in Marin County was failing to fix some leaks and downplaying the seriousness of others in falsified reports. Segale said he reported the misconduct after his supervisor sought to discipline him for insisting on fixing a serious leak his boss had told him not to repair.
Eventually, his boss, who had hoped to earn bonuses by minimizing problems in his district, was fired, Segale said. But PG&E didn't immediately look for similar problems elsewhere, he added, and Segale said the company punished his forthrightness by denying him lucrative overtime work that other employees had no trouble getting.
Redeker also said he told PG&E higher-ups in 2005 that leaks weren't being repaired and records were falsified. He claimed in a lawsuit that the records deception had led PG&E, the California Public Utilities Commission and the public "to believe that potentially explosive gas leaks had been properly repaired or had stopped leaking on their own, when, in fact, the underground gas lines still were leaking gas in public places."
Nonetheless, the suit claimed, a PG&E attorney "strongly recommended" Redeker keep quiet about the matter and the company "declined his offer" to help find similar leak problems in other districts. Instead, Redeker said, he was laid off in April 2006 in "retaliation" for reporting company misconduct. Four months after he sued PG&E for wrongful termination, in 2008, the case was quietly settled with the terms kept secret. The case was settled so quickly, PG&E didn't even bother to file legal papers denying guilt, which is unusual for such litigation.
A third person who tried to tell PG&E it was mishandling leaks was Jim Findley, a 62-year-old mechanic who helps maintain gas pressure in pipes. He was among the workers Darbee praised for having come forward in 2007. But Findley had issued a similar warning two years earlier. During a shareholders meeting in 2005, a news story quoted him complaining, "We're managing leaks, we're not fixing them."
In an interview, Findley said he also tried for years to alert the company that it badly needed to upgrade its gas pipes. But until 2007, he said, PG&E "dismissed me as a squeaky wheel."
'Severely mistreated'
In a separate matter last year, union safety official Wiseman said he ran afoul of PG&E after complaining about its gas-line employees working in dangerous conditions.
A lawsuit he filed accusing PG&E of labor law and other violations claims two PG&E supervisors detained him overnight in a Stockton hotel, threatened to fire him and made him undergo a psychiatric exam. The suit said he was found "mentally fit, except for his anxiety that was attributable to his having been severely mistreated by PG&E."
PG&E legal papers have denied Wiseman's allegations. But his claims about the psychiatric evaluation are reminiscent of Neil Aiken, a former PG&E manager who complained of safety problems at the Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant.
Aiken was fired after PG&E sent him to two psychiatrists in 1998 who declared him a delusional security threat. Nonetheless, the U.S. Labor Department concluded the psychiatric sessions were "more about how to remove Mr. Aiken from his position than to make a fair, unbiased evaluation of Mr. Aiken's mental state." It also faulted PG&E for "a culture where employees were reluctant to voice safety complaints."
Yet another allegation that PG&E ignored warnings was leveled in June by Larry Medina, PG&E's former records and information coordinator, who told authorities he alerted PG&E in 1993 that its record keeping was deficient. PG&E's records are still a mess, a potential safety issue the PUC is now investigating.
In the aftermath of the San Bruno accident, the PUC is considering creating extra safeguards for workers who blow the whistle on utility misconduct. And, in the future, Commissioner Mike Florio said he hopes the agency will be "more proactive in seeking out information from these types of sources."
Contact Steve Johnson at 408-920-5043.

§PG&E Diablo Canyon Nuclear Plant Built On Fault
by No Nukes Action Committee
PG&E has illegally retaliated against nuclear plant whistleblowers. They need to be held criminally liable for their illegal activity against IBEW 1245 whistleblowers at San Bruno and Diablo Canyon.
§Protest PG&E's Diablo Canyon Nuclear Reactor
by Phoebe Ann Sorgen, Romi Elnagar (montereypinegreen [at]
Federal District Courthouse - Courtroom G on the 15th floor at 450 Golden Gate Ave in San Francisco. Protest OUTSIDE

Monday, April 21, at 9:30 AM PROTEST in SF
PGE is finally being arraigned, pleading not guilty to 12 felony indictments for gross negligence re the San Bruno fire/disaster.
Yikes, the same criminal clowns operate the Diablo Canyon nuclear reactor!
Federal District Courthouse - Courtroom G on the 15th floor at 450 Golden Gate Ave in San Francisco
PROTEST outside. Bring signs please. (We might then march one block to the CPUC.)
San Bruno & Diablo - both aging infrastructure, both treacherous for the public, both under PG&E mismanagement!
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