Fire report could complicate PG&E bankruptcy decision

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — A state fire investigation’s conclusion that Pacific Gas & Electric Corp. equipment was not to blame for a deadly wildfire in Northern California wine country could complicate the utility’s plans to file for bankruptcy.

State investigators said Thursday the 2017 blaze that killed 22 people and destroyed more than 5,600 structures in Sonoma and Napa counties was caused by a private electrical system.

PG&E previously said it plans to file for bankruptcy protection in the face of at least $30 billion in potential damages from the wine country blaze and other California wildfires in 2017 and 2018. Bankruptcy would also give it space to formulate a plan to prevent its equipment from causing more catastrophic fires.

Legal experts said PG&E will likely move forward with its planned bankruptcy.

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