CalFire Sues Power Company for 2013 Wildfire

Agency seeks over $4M in cost of fighting Powerhouse Fire

More than 2,000 firefighters worked on scene to contain the Powerhouse Fire in northern Los Angeles County this past spring. Communications served as a critical lifeline for all involved in the containment effort. Photo courtesy Ryan Babroff.

More than 2,000 firefighters worked on scene to contain the Powerhouse Fire in northern Los Angeles County this past spring. Communications served as a critical lifeline for all involved in the containment effort. Photo courtesy Ryan Babroff.

 

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A state agency is suing the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power to recover the more than $4 million cost in fighting a wildfire sparked by power lines three years ago.

The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection alleges in a lawsuit filed Thursday that the Powerhouse Fire near Santa Clarita was ignited by the electric arcing of power lines, which dropped burning fragments of metal into the dry brush below.

The fire in May 2013 burned 24 homes and about 50 square miles.

The City Attorney’s office had no immediate comment.

A U.S. Forest Service investigation previously concluded the fire was caused by a tripped power line and gusty winds.

Some victims have sued the DWP, blaming the utility for failing to properly maintain power lines.

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