California

Lawsuit filed against PG&E on behalf of Camp Fire victims

BUTTE COUNTY (KRON) - A lawsuit has been filed Tuesday against PG&E on on behalf of victims impacted by the Camp Fire that devastated Butte County.

The lawsuit alleges that PG&E failed to maintain it's equipment resulting in the deadly fire. 

The fire has destroyed 7,102 structures, threatened 15,500 structures, and left 150,000 people without a home. 

The victims suffered injuries and lost their homes and businesses in the fire, according to the lawsuit.

The lawsuit alleges that PG&E has a long history of "safety lapses that caused injury and death to California residents, and destroyed or damaged their property" citing the 2010 San Bruno gas explosion, 2017 North Bay Fires and other incidents.

A day before the fire destroyed the county, PG&E got in touch with Betsy Ann Cowley, saying they needed access to her property because their power lines were causing sparks.

PG&E has provided an “initial electric incident report” with state regulators and will fully cooperate with any investigations.

Publicly, PG&E said it experienced a problem on an electrical transmission line near the site of the massive fire, minutes before the blaze broke out.

The cause of the Camp Fire is still under investigation, according to CAL Fire. 

On Tuesday evening, Paul Doherty with PG&E responded in reference to the emails talking about the sparks and PG&E infrastructure related to the Camp Fire:

"Based on our initial review, the email correspondence with the customer in question was about future planned work on a different transmission line in the area. That line had previously been deenergized and was not operational when the Camp Fire started. We have not seen anything that includes a discussion with the customer in question about “sparks” and PG&E infrastructure. This is not the same line that PG&E identified in its Electric Incident Report on November 8, 2018."

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