PG&E May Try to Shift Liability for North Bay Wildfires to Governments: Patrick McNicholas Featured in The Press Democrat Article
Pacific Gas & Electric Co. (PG&E) is facing the possibility that its power lines will be named by investigators as the cause of the North Bay wildfires. As a result, the company filed claims with Sonoma County, the City of Santa Rosa and other agencies, alleging that if they are found liable for the fires, then those governments may share responsibility because of the “inadequacy” of local fire response and preparations. In The Press Democrat article “PG&E May Try to Shift Liability for North Bay Wildfires to Governments,” Partner Patrick McNicholas discusses why PG&E’s recent claims contradict their previous legal arguments.
PG&E previously stated that the hurricane-force winds that caused tree limbs to crash into their power lines were beyond their experience, but is now arguing that the governments failed to do enough to limit the damage caused by the fires. “For them to say ‘oh we couldn’t have planned for this because it wasn’t a predictable event,’ then to say ‘the government agencies needed to do a better job of planning for this event’ seems disingenuous and contradictory,” said Pat.