A tree that fell on Pacific Gas & Electric Co. power lines may have helped spark the Dixie Fire, a blaze started near the scar of the deadly 2018 Camp Fire, the utility said in a preliminary filing with state regulators.
Lieff Cabraser is investigating reports that Pacific Gas & Electric equipment may have been involved in the start of the big Dixie Fire burning in the Sierra Nevada. As of July 30th, the fire had grown to more than 240,000 acres, burning 60 structures including some homes in Indian Falls, with over 10,000 more structures and homes threatened, including Native American archaeological sites. Its size jumped significantly when it merged with the Fly Fire in the Lassen and Plumas national forests. More than 7,800 residents across Butte and Plumas counties have been ordered to evacuate.
PG&E said in a report to the California Public Utilities Commission that a repairman responding to a circuit outage on July 13 spotted blown fuses in a conductor atop a pole, a tree leaning into the conductor, and fire at the base of the tree.
The Dixie Fire has already grown to 29 square miles, so far largely in wilderness areas. PG&E has admitted that investigators with the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection have collected equipment from the location.
PG&E equipment has repeatedly been linked to major wildfires, including the 2018 fire that ravaged the town of Paradise and killed 85 people. The Dixie Fire is among dozens currently burning in the parched West.
In Northern California, Lieff Cabraser represents victims of the Northbay and Camp Fires as creditors in the PG&E bankruptcy. Elizabeth Cabraser serves on the PG&E Fire Victims Trust Oversight Committee. In litigation against Southern California Edison on behalf of those who whose homes, businesses, and lives were devastated by the Thomas Fire and mudslides in Southern California in late 2017 and early 2018, Lieff Cabraser partners Lexi Hazam and Robert Nelson serve as Co-Lead Counsel. We are investigating a wide range of legal claims on behalf of those displaced, injured and otherwise affected by this latest series of fires.
Read more information about wildfires and the rights of fire victims.