San Luis Obispo Shell station part of $19.5 million judgment

November 10, 2009

By KAREN VELIE

The Shell Oil Co. will pay $19.5 million in civil penalties and fees to cover environmental violations at its California gas stations including reports that operators tampered with or disabling leak detection devices at a now-defunct Shell gas station in San Luis Obispo.

“Shell Oil Company disregarded the state’s underground fuel storage and hazardous waste laws, committing hundreds of environmental violations at its gasoline stations across California,” state Atty. Gen. Jerry Brown said in a statement.

In addition to imposed monetary damages, the company is also required to improve spill and alarm monitoring, hazardous waste management, and emergency response at its gas stations.

In 2005, a San Luis Obispo health inspector discovered that the Shell station, located at the time at 12398 Los Osos Valley Rd., had failed to maintain the required leak detection monitoring system for its gasoline tanks. Shell sold the station a few years ago and it was replaced with a parking lot.

After district attorneys in San Diego and Riverside counties filed successful suits against Shell in 2006, Brown’s office mounted an investigation into environmental violations at more than a 1,000 corporate-owned Shell stations statewide, which included researching past violations.

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One Comment

  1. Karen Velie says:

    By: cheseburger on 11/17/09 [Delete]
    Paperboy ,I remember that one and as LOS OSOS, goes, the biggest fraud created by the good old boys yet, one little residency get’s, to pay for 100% of the costs of a sewer system that will be operating at least a hundred years later, and they move it around coordinately, to cost more, fangs are sunk deep, any idea on how to break the jaws!

    By: paperboy on 11/16/09 [Delete]
    $19.5 million isn’t much considering that Morro Bay got $1.6 million as mitigation, and forced Shell (Equilon actually) to clean up the groundwater of MTBe, at a cost of several million more, and I believe this was back in 2000.
    The Shell station owner back then was exposed as having falsified records to hide leaks in his system. Shell/Equilon was not happy and settled the matter to avoid it executives and so-called scientific experts being charged with perjury in what was just a code enforcement/nuisance abatement action.
    $19.5 million doesn’t amount to much statewide. I’m sure the regional water boards will still force the company to clean up its old gas stations. LIke pit bulls, they don’t tend to let go once their fangs are sunk into your backside (just ask the folks in Los Osos).

    By: cheseburger on 11/12/09 [Delete]
    pixieboohoo, I wrote,”oil company is/was operating like all other oil companies do! To make money! Health-risks come with the product. You write,”have another cheseburger…since you except blatant violations as if it’s “part of the package”,… polluting your health.”
    You’ve obviously misunderstood me, I am only voicing an opinion that almost “all” aging gas stations are failing current standards, the article reads,”After district attorneys in San Diego and Riverside counties filed successful suits against Shell in 2006, Brown’s office mounted an investigation into environmental violations at more than a 1,000 corporate-owned shell stations,” I am merely saying that shell is not the only polluting Gas station.

    I did not mean to imply I was in favor of this outrageous pollution. I came from, Avila and watched, Unocal delete the locals, by, buying the town and selling a good portion of it to the Good Old Boy’s at a profit, many properties sit upside down on loans to Gearhart and I believe are bank owned now. It was a wonderful place to grow up, but only the rich live there now! A whole sub-culture of good people were scattered in 1997.

    By: pixieboohoo on 11/11/09 [Delete]
    have another cheseburger…since you except blatant violations as if it’s “part of the package”,… polluting your health.

    By: Rewind on 11/11/09 [Delete]
    I’ll second that!

    By: Paso_Guy on 11/11/09 [Delete]
    Probably a good day to thank all vererans for their service!

    By: Rewind on 11/11/09 [Delete]
    ok, must have been a slow news day.

    By: mccdave on 11/11/09 [Delete]
    Oh, so it’s not a “parking lot” now but Toyota’s used car lot?

    A lot of gas stations across the state closed a few years back because stricter leak control laws took effect.

    By: watcher on 11/10/09 [Delete]
    Lets not forget that this site that is currently owned by San Luis Toyota was a Texaco station for 30 plus years, and this happened while it operated as a Texaco. Texaco was purchased by Chevron, and Shell aquired this site through a separate joint venture with Texaco.

    By: cheseburger on 11/10/09 [Delete]
    On subject, I know, we are not all stupid, but shouldn’t there be at least two zero’s behind that number? 19.5? And I’m sure this oil company is/was operating like all other oil companies do! To make money! Health-risks come with the product.

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