PG&E Equipment Caused Calif. Wildfires, Judge Finds

Law360 (January 18, 2019, 12:42 PM EST) -- A California federal judge has tentatively found that Pacific Gas & Electric Co.'s equipment's vulnerability to falling tree limbs has been "the single most recurring cause" of the 2017 and 2018 California wildfires to which the company has been linked.

U.S. District Judge William Alsup wrote Thursday that PG&E’s distribution lines are susceptible to trees and limbs falling on them during high-wind events, especially in rural areas, where the lines run through grass, brush and trees.

He added the company's power conductors are "almost always" without insulation and cause sparks when they're pushed together by falling trees, which has an "extreme...

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