Utility Company has Created a $13.5 Billion Fund to Compensate Wildfire Victims
Pacific Gas & Electric Company has settled a dispute with disaster-relief agencies (FEMA) and is planning to compensate victims of catastrophic wildfires in California. The company told a federal judge that it had set aside a $13.5 billion for this purpose.
The utility company is racing to emerge from bankruptcy after being sued by victims of the 2015, 2017 and 2018 California wildfires. An investigation determined that the deadly wildfires were ignited by PG& E’s faulty electricity transmission equipment. The San Francisco-based company faced more than $50 billion in claimed losses from the disasters.
Details of the deal struck by California’s Office of Emergency Services, the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the lawyers of the victims were not immediately disclosed.
The agencies wanted to be reimbursed as much as $4 billion for financial assistance provided during the disaster.
The news was well-received by investors, with the company’s stock surging by 10% to close at $13.90 on Tuesday, March 10.