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CA congresswoman: PG&E can't find key records

The Sept. 9 San Bruno natural gas explosion caused a fire that leveled nearly 40 homes.

January 29, 2011 12:00:00 AM PST
The utility company responsible for the deadly pipeline explosion in a San Francisco suburb is missing some key records.

Rep. Jackie Speier (D-California) said the president of Pacific Gas & Electric Co. told her that his staff cannot find them.

PG&E spokesman Brian Swanson did not immediately confirm or deny the congresswoman's statement.

Those records are needed to set safe operating pressures for nearly a third of the company's largest gas transmission lines.

Regulators have ordered PG&E and other California utilities to present reliable records for transmission lines.

The order came after PG&E admitted it had incorrect documents about the San Bruno pipeline that exploded on Sept. 9, killing eight people.

PG&E records showed the pipe was seamless, but investigators found the spine of the ruptured line had a type of weld that's now being examined in the search for a cause of the explosion.

Officials have not determined an exact cause but suspect the pipeline may have burst under high pressure.