June 15, 2015 — Texas-based pipeline operator Plains All-American Pipeline has been hit with another proposed class action lawsuit after an oil spill in Santa Barbara devastated the community’s beaches and tourism just before Memorial Day Weekend, Law360 reports.
The class action (PDF) was filed in federal court in California by Savvy of Boulder, LLC. The owner of the store, Erica Dahl, relocated to Santa Barbara in June 2011 and opened a store in the historical district.
After the oil spill, the lawsuit states that “there was a noticeable decline in business at local retailers and establishments,” including her store. Her earnings for the month of May were 20-25% lower than May 2014.
According to the complaint:
“In fact, news channel CNN arrived soon thereafter to document Memorial Day Weekend on the all but empty Santa Barbara harbor during a holiday in which the local economy would otherwise thrive.”
Another class action lawsuit has already been filed by a commercial fisherman. All fishing and shellfish harvesting has been banned. The plaintiff says the environmental impact could last many years.
Meanwhile, cleanup costs have ballooned to $62 million, or about $3 million per day, according to the Orange County Register. Nearly 100 miles of coastline were fouled after the pipeline ruptured on May 19, spilling 101,000 gallons of crude oil. The cause of the spill has not yet been determined, but investigators found extensive external corrosion along some sections of the pipe.