Panish | Shea | Boyle | Ravipudi LLP and Robert F. Kennedy Jr. Join Class Action Lawsuit Against Southern California Gas Co.

Posted on December 7, 2015

Panish | Shea | Boyle | Ravipudi LLP along with Robert F. Kennedy Jr. have joined The R. Rex Parris Law Firm in a class action lawsuit on behalf of five individual plaintiffs and Save Porter Ranch who represent a class of individuals affected by a massive gas leak that was discovered adjacent to the residential community of Porter Ranch in October. Hundreds of the community’s 30,000 residents have had to relocate after becoming sickened by leaks of natural gas and associated chemicals into the air.

“The massive uncontrolled gas leak is expected to cost Sempra Energy (SRE) shareholders over $1 billion dollars,” said R. Rex Parris.

The 85-page class action complaint filed in Los Angeles Superior Court on December 2, 2015 names Sempra Energy and Southern California Gas Company (SoCalGas) as defendants and alleges that SoCalGas gas has been injecting gas underground into illegally permitted wells. “In September of 2015, SoCalGas injected 5.7 billion cubic feet of gas underground near the residents of Porter Ranch. SoCalGas was injecting what is believed to be similar amounts of gas in October when one of the injection wells suffered a massive well failure and blowout, leading to the leak.”

“Southern California Gas Company has shown complete disregard not only for the safety of communities near these defective wells but also for the adverse short and long term impacts on the health of its customers,” says Brian Panish. “The company’s slogan, ‘Southern California Gas Co. has been delivering clean, safe and reliable natural gas to its customers for more than 140 years,’ rings hollow in the ears of the hundreds of Porter Ranch residents displaced from their homes in the holiday season thanks to SoCalGas’ failure to live up to this promise.”

In addition to Brian Panish of Panish | Shea | Boyle | Ravipudi LLP who is one of the country’s leading trial lawyers, Attorney Robert F. Kennedy Jr. the son of former New York senator and U.S. attorney general Robert F. Kennedy, and nephew of former U.S. president John F. Kennedy has also joined the case against SoCalGas.

“Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.’s reputation as a resolute defender of the environment stems from a litany of successful legal actions. Mr. Kennedy was named one of Time magazine’s ‘Heroes for the Planet’ for his success helping Riverkeeper lead the fight to restore the Hudson River.   Mr. Kennedy serves as Senior Attorney for the Natural Resources Defense Council and has worked on environmental issues across United States Mr. Kennedy is a graduate of Harvard University. He studied at the London School of Economics and received his law degree from the University of Virginia Law School. Following graduation he attended Pace University School of Law, where he was awarded a Master’s Degree in Environmental Law,” said Parris.

A community meeting with Councilmember Mitchell Englander to discuss the Porter Ranch gas leak has been scheduled for Tuesday, December 8 at 6 p.m. at the Odyssey Restaurant located at 15600 Odyssey Drive, Granada Hills, CA 91344. Affected residents will be able to ask questions to independent experts. Former state regulators will also be on hand to explain how federal and state laws are being violated and share how the danger to the innocent Porter Ranch families is not over, even after this leak is plugged.

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