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Monitor Suggested In Determining PG&E Wildfire Prevention Efforts

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Sonora, CA – U.S. prosecutors are urging a federal judge to work with a court-appointed monitor to determine ways Pacific Gas & Electric Co. (PG&E) can prevent its equipment from starting more wildfires.

In a court filing today, the U.S. attorney’s office in San Francisco wrote that Judge William Alsup should refrain from immediately imposing new requirements on the utility.  Earlier this month, the judge proposed ordering PG&E to remove or trim all trees that could fall onto power lines, among other things. The utility argues that would create safety risks and cost too much money.

In its court filing Wednesday, the company insisted that it is committed to wildfire mitigation, but it contends that a criminal case being handled by the judge is not the right forum to address such measures. The judge is overseeing a criminal verdict against PG&E stemming from a deadly San Bruno gas pipelines explosion in 2010. In that case, the judge is currently considering additional probation terms against the utility.

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