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California Public Utilities Commission opens new case against PG&E over 2017 wildfires

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Posted at 7:29 AM, Jun 28, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-28 10:30:47-04

New action against PG&E as the California Public Utilities Commission opens a case against the utility over the devastating 2017 wildfires.

PG&E, which operated power lines that ignited several huge, deadly wildfires agreed to pay $1 billion in damages to 14 local governments earlier this month. More than half of the money would go to four governments impacted by a 2018 fire that killed 85 people and destroyed nearly 14,000 homes in Paradise.

The CPUC says its investigation into PG&E's role in the 2017 fires found there were several issues with the utilities fire prevention protocol, including its vegetation management practices and equipment operations during severe conditions. The commission is also ordering PG&E to create a mobile app that customers can use to report concerns with utility poles.

And the CPUC is also looking into the southern California gas company. The commission is considering penalties for the massive natural gas leak back in 2015 that is blamed for sickening thousands of Los Angeles residents. A May report concluded that safety failures played a role in the blowout at the Aliso Canyon gas well in LA.