The iconic 132-year-old Honey Run Bridge sits in ruins on Butte Creek east of Chico, Calif., on Saturday, November 10, 2018. David Little, a fourth generation Chico native and editor of the local Chico Enterprise-Record, surveys the ruins of the famous covered bridge, another victim of the deadly Camp fire. (Karl Mondon/Bay Area News Group/TNS)

PG&E hit with lawsuit over Butte County fire as death toll reaches 48

A group of Bay Area lawyers filed a lawsuit Tuesday in San Francisco Superior Court against PG&E on behalf of several victims of the deadly Camp Fire in Butte County, which has killed at least 48 people.

The lawsuit, filed by a group of attorneys collectively known as Corey Danko Gibbs, alleges that PG&E was negligent in failing to maintain its infrastructure and properly inspect and manage its power lines.

The lawsuit is seeking an unspecified amount to cover a variety of losses, including lost homes, properties and personal belongings, as well as evacuation and temporary housing costs, emotional trauma and loss of income.

The Camp Fire began last Thursday near the town of Chico and has already burned 130,000 acres in the area, consuming several communities and destroying a total of 7,600 single-family homes, according to Cal Fire officials. While the fire is 35 percent contained, a cause has not been determined.

The suit alleges the blaze broke out when a high voltage transmission line failed and ignited vegetation.

Plaintiff’s attorney Mike Danko said although a cause hasn’t been determined, “this time we have pretty good evidence” that PG&E is responsible.

PG&E did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

-Daniel Montes and Keith Burbank, Bay City News

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