Six devastating wildfires raged in Southern California, forcing hundreds of thousands of people from their neighborhoods to avoid the flames and prompting state and federal officials to declare a state of emergency for the region.
Southern California Wildfires – December 2017
- Thomas Fire (Ventura & Santa Barbara Counties)
- Creek Fire (Sylmar/Los Angeles)
- Rye Fire (Santa Clarita)
The Thomas Fire, the largest of the six blazes, straddled Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties. According to NPR, the fire has burned for more than a week and is considered the largest and most destructive fire in California history. As of Dec. 13, the fire had burned more than 236,000 acres and was reported as only 25% contained.
Other ongoing fires include the Creek Fire in the Sylmar/Kagel Canyon area of Los Angeles and the Rye Fire in Santa Clarita. More than 150,000 people have faced mandatory evacuation orders as a result of these fires.
Fire officials are investigating the cause of these fires. A recent press release from Southern California Edison revealed that some of the electric utility company’s facilities are the subject of the investigation, which could point to a possible cause.
The California Fire Lawyers is an accomplished legal team consisting of top environmental attorneys with experience taking on the negligent utility companies who cause these devastating blazes. We have successfully recovered more than $650,000,000 for more than 4,000 victims of previous fires. We are also currently representing more than 350 victims of October’s deadly Northern California wildfires.
If you or a loved one were affected by the Southern California wildfires, an experienced wildfire attorney may be able to help you recover your losses. Please call the California Fire Lawyers at 805-491-9947 or contact us online to discuss your legal options.
Attorneys with California Fire Lawyers say deadly situation linked to SoCal Edison
MONTECITO, Calif., January 17, 2018 – Today, the California Fire Lawyers, a legal group representing victims of wildfires, expressed their condolences and support for Southern California communities impacted by devastating mudslides. The mudslides have been linked to the recent fires believed to be caused by Southern California Edison.
According to NPR, at least 20 people have died and four people remain missing because of the “Thomas Flood” mudslides in Santa Barbara County. Residents have been told to evacuate as emergency crews work to clear the area of mud and debris.
“The mudslide washed my car away and the destroyed remains of it were found on the beach in Montecito,” said Alicia Journey, a local attorney with the California Fire Lawyers. “As terrifying as that was, I am so thankful that my family was otherwise unharmed. My heart breaks for the families who are grieving the loss of loved ones after this terrible ordeal.”
“The horrific mudslides in Montecito and other parts of Santa Barbara County are hitting this community hard, right on the heels of the worst fire season in California history,” said John Fiske, an environmental attorney and shareholder with Baron & Budd. “These post-fire debris flows happen when water rushes down the hillside, picking up mud, burnt trees, and other debris along the way. This situation is linked to the Thomas Fire, and SoCal Edison should be held accountable for every bit of the devastation that they have caused.”
“Even during this truly awful time, it’s important for impacted residents to remember that these tragedies were caused by SoCal Edison’s wrongdoing,” said John F. “Mickey” McGuire, an experienced landslide litigator and senior partner with Thorsnes Bartolotta McGuire.
McGuire has nearly 40 years of experience in handling landslide and soil movement claims. In the 1970s, in one of the first cases of its kind, McGuire successfully litigated on behalf of nearly 100 Oak Hills residents after a developer knowingly disturbed an ancient landslide which destroyed their homes. In 1995, he represented about 75 landslide victims in La Conchita, who each received up to three times their home’s worth in compensation. In 2003, McGuire represented the La Jolla Alta Master Council in a lawsuit that ultimately resulted in more than $9.5 million in settlements to repair storm drain systems and prevent a landslide.
“Throughout my career, I have represented hundreds of families whose homes were damaged or destroyed by landslides and similar disasters and achieved tremendous results on their behalf,” McGuire said. “It is imperative that all those affected by these mudslides seek out their legal options as soon as possible so that they can recover full and fair compensation for their losses.”
California Fire Lawyers, a group of experienced wildfire attorneys from Baron & Budd, Singleton Law Firm, Dixon Diab & Chambers LLP, Thorsnes Bartolotta McGuire, and Terry Singleton, Esq., is working to bring justice for victims of this tragedy. For more information about taking legal action against SoCal Edison for wildfire and/or mudslide damages, call 805-491-9947 or visit our website at www.CaliforniaFireLawyers.com.