MODESTO — Minor violations in 2010 and 2011 were enough to sweep a Modesto Arco gas station with a mostly clean record into a broad lawsuit earlier this month against oil company BP.
In a Feb. 8 Modesto Bee story, state prosecutors cited problems at more than 780 Arco stations throughout California, including one at the southwest corner of Tully Road and Bowen Avenue and two in Merced. District attorneys in Stanislaus and Merced counties signed onto the lawsuit with California Attorney General Kamala Harris and prosecutors in six other counties.
In some cases, operators had disabled leak-detection devices, didn't fix leaks, failed to test spill systems and improperly disposed of hazardous waste in incidents since 2006, the lawsuit said.
None of those apply to the Modesto station, according to an inspection history provided this week by the Stanislaus County Department of Environmental Resources.
"For the most part, their compliance status has been excellent," said Jami Aggers, interim director of environmental resources, in an email.
The station easily passed nine tests since 2006; notes by inspectors include terms such as "clean and organized" and "records keeping is excellent."
In November 2010, an inspector noted that financial responsibility forms were three weeks overdue. The next year, some water was found in a basin that should have been dry, and drain mechanisms in four other such containers didn't work properly during tests.
All problems were corrected that day or three days later, inspection notes say, and Arco's environmental compliance division followed up a few weeks after with testing and repair documentation.
The Bee's Feb. 8 story noted that violations were not specified in the lawsuit, but incorrect information appeared in a headline posted at modbee.com two days later.
A BP spokesman responding to the lawsuit in general told The Associated Press that problems amounted to "procedural violations."
Harris also sued ConocoPhillips and Phillips 66 in January.
Bee staff writer Garth Stapley can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (209) 578-2390.