A Porter Ranch man sued Southern California Gas Co. and its parent company Sempra Energy today, alleging his home was negatively affected by odors and pollutants generated by the recent leak at the Aliso Canyon storage facility.

William Gandsey filed the proposed class-action lawsuit in Los Angeles Superior Court, alleging negligence and both public and private nuisance. He seeks unspecified damages.

A Gas Co. representative said he may have a comment later today on the lawsuit.

Last week, county health officials directed the utility to expedite repairs and offer residents free temporary relocation options. The leak was discovered Oct. 23 by crews at the storage facility located near Northridge and was reported to the county five days later.

The Gas Co. has said the leak, which could take months to repair, does not pose a threat because it is outdoors and over a mile away from and more than 1,200 feet higher than homes or public areas.

Gandsey “lives well within the exposure zone within the Porter Ranch community,” his suit states. He says his home has been “physically invaded by gases, chemicals, noxious odors, pollutants and contaminants”  from the facility, which is located a mile from Porter Ranch and is the largest of four natural gas storage fields owned by the Gas Co.   

The Southern California Air Quality Management District has received nearly 500 complaints from residents having nausea, dizziness, vomiting, shortness of breath, nose bleeds and headaches, according to the lawsuit.

Residents Hold Rally Tonight

Dozens of Porter Ranch area residents have planned to hold a rally tonight, Monday, Nov. 23 at 6:30 p.m. at the corner of Tampa Ave., and rinaldi Street in the Whole Foods Parking Lot in Northridge. In a news release, organizers wrote, they are holding the rally, “One month after the start of a gas leak at Aliso Canyon Storage Field – to demand a full investigation of the SoCalGas well leak and the misconduct of the SoCalGas Company in responding to the leak.

Residents are upset that SoCalGas initially lied about the source of the leak, then misled the public about the health risks to nearby residents”  They are “demanding that Councilmember Mitchell Englander and County Supervisor Michael Antonovich, compel a full investigation by all necessary local and statewide agencies into the leak, its causes and SoCalGas’s actions since the leak began.”

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