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PG&E Blamed For 2018 Camp Fire In California

Jayson Derrick

The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection said iWednesday the November 2018 Camp Fire in Butte County was the result of wrongdoing by PG&E Corporation (NYSE: PCG).

What Happened

Cal Fire said after a "very meticulous and thorough investigation," the fire that killed 85 people and burned 153,336 was caused by electrical transmission lines owned and operated by PG&E. The fire started Nov. 8 in the early morning hours in Butte County as "tinder-dry vegetation and Red Flag conditions consisting of strong winds, low humidity and warm temperatures promoted this fire."

Cal Fire's findings are consistent with PG&E's statement in early 2019 it was "probable" its equipment is to blame for the fire. The company also previously disclosed transmission equipment problems close to the site of the fire.

Why It's Important

PG&E said in a press release following Cal Fire's report it "accepts this determination," which is "consistent" with its prior statements. The company also said it remains committed to working with communications to make "California safer."

PG&E continues to focus on its Community Wildfire Safety Program which includes real-time monitoring and intelligence, better vegetation practices, re-inspections of infrastructure, building a "more resilient" electric system and shutting down power when extreme conditions occur.

PG&E's stock closed Wednesday at $18.06 per share and traded down marginally in after-hours trading.

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PG&E Blamed For 2018 Camp Fire In California

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