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State lawmakers plan review of gas pipelines and safety standards after San Bruno explosion

September 10, 2010 |  6:12 pm

California lawmakers said Friday that the San Bruno explosion raises questions about whether the state is doing enough to regulate gas pipelines and enforce safety standards and now plan a legislative review of state programs.

"This horrible accident is a wake-up call that California needs to do more to protect the public and meet the highest safety standards," said Sen. Alex Padilla (D-Pacoima), chairman of the Senate Energy Committee.

Padilla's panel and the Senate Public Safety Committee will hold joint hearings in the coming weeks to review issues raised by the deadly explosion.

One concern that will be addressed: reports that some residents in the San Bruno neighborhood complained about smelling gas in the days before the explosion, and whether "if they had been responded to differently might this have been prevented?'' said Bill Mabie, Padilla's chief of staff.

Sen. Mark Leno (D-San Francisco), chairman of the public safety panel, said his office has already been in touch with federal investigators.

"We intend to work closely with them and others to ensure that we develop the necessary reforms to prevent another disaster like this,'' Leno said.

-- Patrick McGreevy in Sacramento