Each accident moves the issue of maintenance and records management higher up the agenda. As a consequence, senior decision-makers, including members who sit on the risk management committee of a utility, should reassess their operations and make sure the company’s historical information meets quality standard.
Regulators are concentrating on pipeline safety and maintenance following the September 2010 explosion in San Bruno, CA, of a high-pressure gas transmission line operated by Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E).
San Bruno explosion shows just what is at risk, namely health and human safety and the bottom line
The San Bruno accident killed eight people and destroyed dozens of homes. Representatives of the eight people killed are suing PG&E, as are more than 60 other families affected by the blast. At least one of the lawsuits alleges that the explosion was caused by defective welding linked to improper maintenance on the ruptured line.
Clearly, health and human safety are the paramount risks, but organizations also know that the overall impact on the bottom line can be severe.
Records management practices have been on the radar of regulators and lawmakers for years, particularly since the Energy Policy Act of 2005. But the San Bruno accident, along with other recent industry tragedies, has intensified that focus, and utilities will be heavily scrutinized.
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