May 18, 2019

Safety failures led to SoCalGas's 2015 gas blowout

Local resident

A report on the gas leak at a Southern California Gas Co. storage facility in October 2015 — the largest-known release of methane in U.S. history — was due to a corroded pipe casing, safety failures by a utility and inadequate regulations, the AP reports.

Why it matters: SoCalGas's blowout in its Aliso Canyon storage facility was deemed preventable as the company failed to investigate previous well failures and didn't properly examine its aging wells. Stricter state regulations followed the disaster, the report found.

  • The 4-month blowout was blamed for sickening thousands of Los Angeles residents and is still the root of many complaints from residents 4 years later.
  • SoCalGas spent more than $1 billion, mostly toward temporarily relocating 8,000 families, according to filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
  • More than 390 lawsuits on behalf of approximately 48,500 people have been filed against the utility.
  • Residents nearby and environmental groups continue to advocate for the facility's shutdown.

Go deeper: $120 million settlement reached in SoCalGas leak case

Go deeper

Why the coronavirus pandemic is hitting minorities harder

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo: Mark Makela/Getty Images

The coronavirus’ disproportionate impact on black and Latino communities has become a defining part of the pandemic.

The big picture: That's a result of myriad longstanding inequities within the health care system and the American economy.

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 3 p.m. ET: 6,804,044 — Total deaths: 362,678 — Total recoveries — 2,788,806Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 3 p.m. ET: 1,909,077 — Total deaths: 109,497 — Total recoveries: 491,706 — Total tested: 19,231,444Map.
  3. Public health: Some people are drinking and inhaling cleaning products in attempt to fight coronavirus, CDC says Fauci: "Very concerned" about spread of virus amid George Floyd protests — Cities offer free testing for protesters.
  4. Tech: The pandemic is accelerating next-generation disease diagnostics — Robotics looks to copy software-as-a-service model as use of robots accelerates.
  5. Business: Sports, film production in California to resume June 12 after 3-month hiatus.
  6. Education: Students and teachers flunked remote learning.

In photos: George Floyd's North Carolina memorial service

The remains of George Floyd are brought into Cape Fear Conference B Church. Photo: Ed Clemente/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

Hundreds gathered in Raeford, North Carolina to honor George Floyd, whose death in Minneapolis nearly two weeks ago has sparked nationwide protests against police brutality.

The state of play: This is the second memorial for Floyd. A number of his family members remain in Raeford, including his sister. He was born in Fayetteville, North Carolina, The News and Observer reports.