Pacific Gas & Electric, California’s largest utility, announced Monday it will seek Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection as it faces billions of dollars in potential liability claims following the Camp and Woolsey fires.
The utility said it “remains committed to providing safe natural gas and electric service to customers as it prepares to initiate voluntary reorganization proceedings under Chapter 11.”
The company faces $30 billion in potential liability stemming from recent wildfires because they allegedly may have been started or aggravated by the company’s electrical distribution equipment.
The Camp Fire in Northern California last November is estimated to be the most costly natural disaster worldwide in 2018, while the Woosely Fire in Los Angeles and Ventura County ranks fifth.
PG&E Corp., parent of the utility, provided the official 15-day advance notice of intent to file petitions to reorganize under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code on or about Jan. 29.
The company also announced that Chief Executive Geisha Williams was stepping down, and PG&E shares fell nearly 50 percent in early trading on Monday morning.
PG&E is California’s largest investor-owned utility with 16 million customers and a 70,000-square-mile service area in Northern and Central California.
>> Subscribe to Times of San Diego’s free daily email newsletter! Click hereFollow Us: