Law \ Legal

Malibu Brush Fire

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A Malibu brush fire broke out this weekend on the 19000 block of Pacific Coast Highway (PCH). The blaze was reported as 50% contained and the conditions were improving. However, this was an odd fire as California had been subjected to torrential rains for several weeks, saturating the ground with rain water from San Diego to the Oregon border.

The fire was about one eighth of an acre according to fire officials. Even though it was small, there were road closures as a result of this latest Malibu fire. Residents were relieved that there were no structures ablaze, but the northbound lanes on Latino Canyon Road near Route 1/PCH were shut down for some time due to safety concerns and firefighting efforts.

PCH Closed Due to Malibu Brush Fire

PCH was briefly closed in both directions on the 21st near Tuna Canyon Rd, but was reopened shortly thereafter.

Malibu has seen some of the most severe wildfires in the nation, including the Woolsey Fire which destroyed more than 1,600 structures and burned roughly 100,000 acres. A significant evacuation had to occur as well, with more than 295,000 people forced to flee the area. Litigation began very quickly resulting both from the cause of the fire as well as the subsequent insurance issues.

Insurance bad faith lawyers and fire litigation attorneys filed thousands of lawsuits against insurance carriers, Southern California Edison and even the Santa Susana Field Laboratory. In that fire, SoCal Edison reported an outage in the Big Rock 16 KV station outside Chatsworth which is just south of Simi Valley (Ventura County). The brush fire was initially reported in that exact location and within 20 minutes Ventura County firefighters were on the scene battling the blaze.

Billions of Dollars in Damage

However, the severity of the fire quickly escalated as winds made the problem far worse. Dry, windy conditions existed throughout the state of California, and the fire exploded. Before it was all over, 3 people were killed and billions of dollars in damage were done to Malibu and the surrounding region.

On that same day, the Camp Fire in Northern California destroyed most of the town of Paradise, CA and cost the lives of 85 people. It was one of the deadliest days on record for wildfires in the state of California and the nation. Fire litigation lawyers, such as those at Singleton Schreiber, were hard at work representing people who lost their homes, lost their property, lost their businesses and lost loved ones due to SoCal Edison’s negligence. Furthermore, the insurance bad faith attorneys represented people whose claims were delayed and denied by billion and trillion dollar insurance corporations.

The Woolsey Fire led to $6 billion in property damage. The Camp Fire Damage was estimated at $16.5 billion. All told, California homeowners have suffered more than $100 billion in property damage due to negligence by various utilities, including SoCal Edison and Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E).

“Fires are a brutal reality due to climate change,” said Gerald Singleton, managing partner at Singleton Schreiber. “However, when utilities such as PG&E and SoCal Edison allow their aging equipment to start fires, it makes life impossible for residents and firefighting incredibly dangerous for first responders.”

First Noteworthy California Fire of 2023

The brush fire in Malibu was the first noticeable one in Southern California in 2023, but with the rains come increased brush and growth, meaning fire season could be far more active this year. Los Angeles County, Riverside County, Ventura County, Santa Barbara County, San Bernardino County, Orange County and San Diego County will all need to be aware of the potential fire hazards to residents, businesses and property.

For anyone seeking a qualified fire attorney with significant experience, Singleton Schreiber’s team of fire lawyers is second to none.

Hiring a lawyer when in such a predicament can seem expensive, but it will be well worth it if it means getting compensation for the property you have lost. Most insurance agencies have ways to twist and bend the rules so as not to pay claims; your attorney will come in handy to make sure that you get paid the full value of what your belongings were worth. In California, Singleton Schreiber is your trusted property damage attorneys. We are experts in taking care of you when it comes to wildfire claims. Call them today at (619) 771-3473.

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