"PG&E Charged With Manslaughter For Sparking California Wildfire"

"Prosecutors in Northern California on Friday charged power utility Pacific Gas & Electric with four counts of manslaughter and other felonies, alleging it failed to cut down a sickly tree that fell onto power lines and sparked a deadly wildfire.

The company denied it committed a crime.

The Zogg Fire started nearly one year ago when a 100-foot (30-meter) pine tree fell onto an electrical line and started a fire that killed four people, destroyed 204 structures and burned more than 56,000 acres (22,600 hectares), Shasta County District Attorney Stephanie Bridgett told reporters.

That tree, leaning downslope toward the electrical line with a cavity in its trunk, had been identified as dangerous in 2018 and PG&E had a legal responsibility to remove it, Bridgett said."

Daniel Trotta reports for Reuters September 25, 2021.

Source: Reuters, 09/27/2021