Posts Tagged ‘dot’

Dennis Herrera Throws Down: Acts to Sue CPUC and Feds Over Failure to Enforce Gas Pipeline Safety Standards

Thursday, July 14th, 2011

City Attorney Dennis Herrera is all over last year’s gas transmission explosion in San Bruno.

All the deets.

The first of a series of photos of the San Bruno aftermath from photographer David Yu

Just released:

Herrera moves to sue CPUC, feds for failing to enforce gas pipeline safety standards

Revelations from San Bruno tragedy lead San Francisco to seek federal court order compelling regulators to strictly enforce U.S. safety standards

SAN FRANCISCO (July 14, 2011) — City Attorney Dennis Herrera has taken the first step toward suing the California Public Utilities Commission and federal regulators for their failure to reasonably enforce federal gas pipeline safety standards as required by the Pipeline Safety Act. The notice of intent to sue Herrera delivered late today is a legally-required precursor to civil litigation by San Francisco, which will seek a federal court order to compel the CPUC and the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration to enforce federal pipeline safety standards in an effective manner.

Herrera’s move comes in the wake of increasingly troubling revelations in news accounts and last month’s sharply critical report by an independent review panel investigating the deadly explosion of a PG&E gas transmission line in San Bruno, Calif. on Sept. 9, 2010, which resulted in the loss of eight lives and the destruction of 38 homes. That investigation report concluded that CPUC’s “culture serves as an impediment to effective regulation,” and went on to fault regulators who “did not have the resources to monitor PG&E’s performance in pipeline integrity management adequately or the organizational focus that would have elevated concerns about PG&E’s performance in a meaningful way.” The City Attorney’s Office will file its comments on that investigation report with the CPUC tomorrow.

Continued after the jump

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Family Portrait: Old Bridge, Old Bridge, New Bridge – America Still Laughing at Us – “Mike (Still) Sucks Big Titties”

Monday, February 7th, 2011

Let’s see here, can you spot the PG&E Tower of our Golden Gate Bridge in the lower left? Good, now check out vertical elements of our old and new San Francisco Oakland Bay Bridges.

Not much has changed with the poorly-managed 1989 Loma Prieta Earthquake-related fix-up job that’s due to finish up sometime this decade, so there’s no reason to think that America isn’t still laughing at us.

Of course you should try to not to stare at the new ornamental tower when you are cruising by on the temporary S-curve. Safety First, right? Anyway, it’s a little higher now. See?

Click to expand

And, of course, Mike still sucks big titties.

That’s your Bay Bridge update for 2011.

The Good and the Bad of 60 Minutes’ Big Story About the San Francisco Oakland Bay Bridge

Monday, April 26th, 2010

60 Minutes just aired its big been-two-decades-after-Loma-Prieta-so-why-isn’t-the-Bay-Bridge-fixed-yet bit. It was mostly good, but let’s start with the bad:

“But they may not know their most important lifeline to the outside world is also one the weakest: the Bay Bridge connecting San Francisco to Oakland.”

The Bay Bridge isn’t a “lifeline to the outside world,” of course.

Then there’s this:

 ”In 2004, Caltrans finished replacing half a million rivets with bolts and added 17 million tons of extra steel.”

Really, 34 billion pounds of steel? Isn’t that a lot? Wouldn’t that weigh more than every person in the western U.S.? Yes. How about 17 million pounds instead? (That’s a screaming error of more than three orders of magnitude. Journalists, when throwing about large numbers, try not to exceed three orders of magnitude. Of course, you should feel free to continue substituting million for billion and vice versa, I mean, they’re both big – they’re practically the same thing, right? Moving on…)

Now, speaking of bad, what about the workers who seem to have all the time in the world to spend tagging our cracked bridge instead of finding more cracks?

via CalTrans, actually

But hey, what about the good?

Well, there’s this:

“But the decision to build an architectural icon didn’t end problems – it started new ones. The most bizarre was with the U.S. Navy. In 1998, it refused to let Caltrans onto Yerba Buena Island to finish its engineering work. The Navy’s issue was whether the Bridge would overshadow the one-time home of Admiral Chester Nimitz, a hero of World War II.”

Did not know that. I knew there were some kinds of probs but I didn’t know that this was one of them. Bad form, U.S. Navy. Do you think old Ches cares about building shadows? I don’t. 

And then there’s this:

“But for those who would say, ‘How dare you take that risk with the lives of people who live in this community,’ you say what?” Pitts asked.

Of course the interviewer didn’t get an answer, but thanks for asking.

Our tough old Bay Bridge has handled stuff like container ship and military jet crashes over the years. Let’s hope it can survive state, federal, and local government mismanagement for just a little longer.

Hold on, Bay Bridge. Hold on.