Finding the cause of a wildfire is no easy task for the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection and other fire authorities. Identifying the ignition point of a fire that spread across thousands of acres takes precise investigation and months of trial and error. Although pinpointing the exact causes of the October fires may take many more months, Cal Fire narrowed down the initial “causation areas” of the fires through process of elimination. While authorities close-in on the exact causes, failed PG&E equipment has been reported in each of the fire’s ignition areas, leading some investigators to believe that PG&E may be responsible.
Holding PG&E Responsible for Violations
In three of the four starting locations of the October fires, PG&E reported trees hitting power lines—accidental interactions that may have started the fires. Cal Fire collected several PG&E fuse cutouts, fail-safe systems that are supposed to stop electrical flows when a power line suffers an electrical surge. Cal Fire additionally collected a downed PG&E power line near a fire-damaged home of the fourth fire. Due to these collections, Cal Fire is investigating the relationship between the electrical components and the ignition of the fires.
While PG&E has claimed that the information provided in the reports is preliminary, many Napa residents are preliminarily hiring attorneys who will hold PG&E accountable if they are ultimately determined to be responsible for the fire’s ignition. If PG&E is found to not be the cause of the fires, they may still be found accountable for California violations that led to the fire’s growth.
With a past record of over 3,500 tree and power line violations within 5 years, chances are that PG&E will be found responsible.
Talk to Our Wildfire Attorneys Today for a Free Consultation
PG&E is highly suspected to have had a hand in the fires. However, investigations have yet to conclude PG&E’s negligence necessitates guilt. This is why you need an insurance claim attorney. Our firm is committed to pursuing justice on behalf of Napa clients. Our team wants to hold PG&E accountable for any wrong they may have done, and we want to do so while giving you the best possible service. If you need legal help with your claim, call (888) 493-1629 for a free consultation. We can discuss your situation, determine your legal options, and help you figure out your next steps.