PG&E indicted for obstructing NTSB investigation into San Bruno explosion

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- A federal grand jury indicted PG&E for obstructing the National Transportation Safety Board's investigation into the San Bruno pipeline disaster which killed eight people and destroyed 38 homes.

The grand jury returned a new superseding criminal indictment that accuses PG&E officials of obstructing the investigation that began immediately after the explosion in Sept. 2010.

It also charges PG&E with 27 counts of knowingly and willfully violating the federal Natural Gas Pipeline Safety Act for poor record keeping about underground natural gas lines.

Tuesday's indictment nullifies one filed in April that charged the utility with 12 felony violations.

PG&E released the following statement: "San Bruno was a tragic accident. We've taken accountability and are deeply sorry. We have worked hard to do the right thing for victims, their families and the community, and we will continue to do so. We are absolutely committed to re-earning the trust of all of the people we are fortunate to serve every day.

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.

We are confident the legal process will ensure all of the facts are fully reviewed. In the meantime, we want all of our customers to know that we will stay focused on transforming this 100-plus-year-old natural gas system into the safest and most reliable in the country. So far, we've committed $2.7 billion of shareholders' dollars to this effort."
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