Porter Ranch has another gas leak; residents want facility permanently shut down

PORTER RANCH, LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Porter Ranch residents have called for the Southern California Gas Company's Aliso Canyon storage facility to be permanently shut down after another gas leak was reported.

As SoCal Gas was going through the process to reopen the facility, which suffered the worst gas leak in U.S. history from October 2015 to February 2016, another leak hit over the weekend.

"We heard reports of residents smelling it on Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and they didn't cap it until Monday night. So that's four days of people going through these symptoms without really any understanding of what's going on," Alexandra Nagy, with the Los Angeles Food and Water Watch said.

MORE: Porter Ranch residents, watchdogs want Aliso Canyon Gas Storage Facility permanently shut

"That's like at least the fourth leak that's been reported since the place has been shut down," President of Save Porter Ranch Matt Pakucko said. "Come on. When is Jerry Brown and Mayor Garcetti and Mitch Englander going to figure out that this place needs to be shut down?"

Porter Ranch residents gathered on Wednesday to call attention to the situation. Many residents said they were still getting sick and that the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, which once promised to be with them until the end, has abandoned them.

MORE: SoCal Gas ordered to offer cleaning services to Porter Ranch residents

SoCal Gas reached a $4 million settlement with Los Angeles County in a criminal case over the historic leak on Tuesday.

"The $4 million settlement yesterday was really just a small slap on the wrist for SoCal Gas," Nagy said. "None of that money will actually come back to the community."

SoCal Gas described the gas leak over the weekend as small and said at no point was there a threat to public health.

The company released the following statement, "Testing results have detected no substance above state or federal levels of concern. This includes thousands of air samples for benzene and other compounds which have been independently collected and analyzed and found to be at or near levels seen in the rest of the county and below levels of concern."
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