The federal government holds Houston-based Plains All American Pipeline responsible for the California oil spill that occurred near the Santa Barbara County coast last year for lack of quick reaction to the spill and for not doing more to prevent corrosion in the pipeline.
Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration also reported in an investigation that Plains All American Pipeline did not have adequate tools to detect there was a major leak in the pipeline.
The report of indictment was issued a year after the 120,000 gallon oil spill that spread nine miles into the Pacific Ocean and killed more than 220 birds and 140 marine mammals.
Plains All American Pipeline responded with an apology for the spill and said the accident did not merit prosecution.
With multiple lawsuits from landowners, fishermen, and other business owners against Plains All American, the pipeline company could face charges up to $269 million.
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