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Two Visalia men were awarded a $12.3 million verdict against Southern California Gas Company after both men were injured by an odorless gas explosion. The two men were trying to ignite a water-heater pilot light when odor-less gas to filled the room from a leak, causing an enormous explosion that blew the ceiling tiles off the roof.

Liquid odorant is put into natural gas to warn people of its presence. However, new steel pipes cause the odor to fade. Southern California Gas was well aware of this fact, yet it failed to warn the public. The two men suffered severe burns covering between 8% and 12% of their bodies. Currently, the two men have been diagnosed with MERSA, a deadly staph infection.

One of the men stated that “[a]fter seeing what [he] saw, [he doesn’t] want something like this to ever happen again.” This emphasizes the importance of following winter heating safety tips, to ensure that you and your loved ones are safe when furnaces are turned on.

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