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Update From PG&E On Rancho Cordova Accident

Release Date: December 30, 2008
Contact: PG&E External Communications (415) 973-5930

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. — Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) issued the following statement:

As the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) continues the investigation into the explosion that occurred in a Rancho Cordova neighborhood on Christmas Eve, PG&E is committed to providing investigators with all information that will assist them in determining the cause of the accident.

“The community deserves answers,” said Jack Keenan, PG&E Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer. “It’s important that all the facts be known, and our highest priority is supporting investigators in their efforts to ensure that no stone is left unturned in the search for information,” added Keenan.

Under section 831.13 of title 49 of the Federal Code of Regulations, any company that is participating in an NTSB investigation may not release information or discuss the findings of the investigation until the NTSB releases such information or provides its approval to do so.

“We understand the frustration of those wanting more details on the cause of this terrible accident,” said Keenan. “However, the investigation has just begun and no one has the answers yet. As information is developed, we’re committed to sharing it as soon as it is known and the NTSB gives the go ahead to do so.

“As the NTSB and others participating in the investigation release their findings, PG&E will take immediate and appropriate action,” Keenan noted.

“This is a tragic accident that claimed the life of one person and injured several others, including PG&E employees,” said Keenan. “We want the families that have been affected and the residents of Rancho Cordova to know we’re committed to doing the right thing for those directly harmed by this accident and the community at large.”

PG&E Reminds Customers Of The Following Natural Gas Safety Tips:

Natural gas is odorless and colorless. As a safety precaution, PG&E adds a sulfur-like odor (which many liken to the smell of rotten eggs) to natural gas to help people identify a natural gas leak. If you suspect a natural gas leak:
  • Leave the area immediately and move to a safe location.
  • Dial 9-1-1 and call PG&E at 1-800-743-5000.
  • Warn others to stay away from the area.
  • Do not attempt to extinguish a natural gas fire or stop the flow of natural gas.
  • Do not try to operate natural gas pipeline valves.
  • Never use matches or candles to look for natural gas leaks, and never turn on or off any electric switches if you suspect a natural gas leak.
  • You should never start an engine, use a home or cell phone, or operate electric devices such as door bells, radios, televisions, lights, appliances or garage door openers in an area where a natural gas leak is suspected.
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