35 Paradise Families Sue PG&E Over California’s Camp Fire
Corrected, Dec. 12., 3:05p.m. ET
Following the devastating Camp Fire that broke numerous California wildfire records and pretty much burned the entire town of Paradise to the ground, 35 families from Paradise are now suing energy company Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E).
In a lawsuit filed in Butte County Superior Court, the plaintiffs allege inadequate maintenance of power equipment caused the Camp Fire and are asking PG&E to cover unspecified losses, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.
State fire inspectors have not yet ruled on a cause in the Camp Fire, but the day before the Camp Fire ignited on Nov. 8, PG&E emailed a customer about “problems with sparks” and asked for permission to access her property. In response to Fortune, a PG&E spokesperson provided this statement:
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.
The Camp Fire killed 88 people, burned more than 150,000 acres, and destroyed more than 14,5000 structures, making it the deadliest and most destructive fire in California history. It may also end up being the state’s costliest fire, topping out at over $19 billion in costs to homeowners, insurers, and the state.
Correction: This story previously stated ‘California fires in early 2018, including the Mendocino Complex Fire and Carr Fire, were also found to be caused by faulty PG&E equipment by California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE) investigators, according to the Press Democrat.’ According to CAL FIRE, the Carr Fire was started by a mechanical failure of a vehicle. The cause of the Mendocino Complex Fire is, as of this writing, still unknown. The story was also updated with a comment by a PG&E spokesperson.