The South Coast Air Quality Management District issued a violation notice to Southern California Gas Co. Friday stemming from a nearly hour-long gas leak that occurred Monday at the Aliso Canyon storage facility in Porter Ranch.
The notice accuses the gas company of causing a public nuisance, and regulators contend SoCalGas didn't notify AQMD or the community about the leak until more than two hours after it began.
A spokesman for SoCalGas said the utility is reviewing the notice.
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According to the AQMD, the agency received 15 complaints from Porter Ranch-area residents about foul odors following the leak, which began at about 4:55 p.m. and was shut off about 50 minutes later. SoCalGas officials said Monday the leak occurred when crews were re-pressurizing equipment following routine maintenance. The leak did not pose any health risk, but did produce a noticeable odor, according to the Gas Co.
According to the AQMD, the leak was caused by the failure of a flange gasket, and SoCalGas did not notify the agency or the community about the leak until "more than two hours after it began."
"We take all nuisance odor incidents seriously," AQMD Executive Officer Wayne Nastri said. "SoCalGas and all facilities in our region have an obligation to protect residents from foul odors that can impact their communities."
The Aliso Canyon facility was the site of the largest methane leak in U.S. history. That leak began in October 2015 and wasn't capped until February 2016. Roughly8 8,000 families were forced from their homes, with many residents complaining of a variety of health issues. Many residents continue to call for the permanent closure of the facility.