It’s official: PG&E is to blame for state’s deadliest wildfire

A months-long investigation concluded the fire was caused by the company’s equipment

PG&E CEO William Johnson
PG&E CEO William Johnson

After months of investigating, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection has determined that Pacific Gas & Electric caused last year’s deadly Camp Fire, the worst in state history.

The conclusion comes about three months after the bankrupt utility giant admitted it was “probable” its equipment started the blaze that destroyed 14,000 homes and killed 85 people, the Los Angeles Times reported.

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Officials said PG&E’s power transmission lines in Pulga, located north of Sacramento, caused the fire.

The utility provider said it will take better steps to mitigate potential fire risk in the future. Earlier this week, the company said it could start preemptively shutting off power in certain areas where high winds could cause power lines to fall. It also plans on setting up “resiliency centers” with backup generators.

PG&E filed for bankruptcy protection in January as scores of survivors launched lawsuits against the company. Around two-thirds of the company’s market value has been wiped out since the company said that there were equipment failures near its origin point. [LAT] — Natalie Hoberman