California Officials Say PG&E Is Responsible For The 2018 Camp Fire

Cal Fire said the Camp Fire was caused by power lines owned and operated by Pacific Gas & Electric.

California Officials Say PG&E Is Responsible For The 2018 Camp Fire
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Cal Fire investigators said Wednesday that power lines owned by Pacific Gas & Electric started the 2018 Camp Fire. The fire killed 85 people, and officials say it's the deadliest and most destructive fire in California history. 

The fire started on Nov. 8 in the Pulga area of Butte County. The department said it burned more than 150,000 acres and destroyed more than 18,000 structures. Cal Fire also said that more than 7,500 wildfires burned over 1.8 million acres in California just last year.

Investigators say they also found a second ignition site, and that they determined the second fire was caused by "vegetation into electrical distribution lines owned and operated by PG&E." The two fires eventually merged. 

PG&E could potentially face criminal charges. In February, the utility company said it believed it was "probable that its equipment [would] be determined to be an ignition point of the 2018 Camp Fire." It also said California officials had determined the fire's starting point was near a PG&E transmission tower. 

California Gov. Gavin Newsom released a report on wildfires last month. In the report, Newsom criticized PG&E for its involvement in fires. The company filed for bankruptcy in January after being hit with a string of lawsuits related to multiple wildfires. Unless it's granted an extension, its reorganization plan is due by the end of May.