US: Rain is finally coming to Los Angeles - but California's wildfire threat is far from over - - PressFrom - US
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US Rain is finally coming to Los Angeles - but California's wildfire threat is far from over

16:17  20 november  2019
16:17  20 november  2019 Source:   usatoday.com

PG&E is offering $13.5 billion in compensation to wildfire victims

  PG&E is offering $13.5 billion in compensation to wildfire victims Bankrupt utility giant PG&E Corp. is offering $13.5 billion in compensation to the victims of wildfires sparked by its power lines as part of a restructuring plan, according to people with knowledge of the situation. In doing so, the San Francisco-based power company is trying to provide the same amount that a group of its creditors -- led by Pacific Investment Management Co. and Elliott Management Corp. -- has agreed to pay victims in a rival reorganization proposal, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the negotiations are private.

The Los Angeles Fire Department deemed the fire a "Major Emergency," the highest classification there is for a fire emergency. California State University, Northridge also closed Friday. Edwin Bernard, 73, told The Associated Press he and his wife had to leave four cats behind as they fled their

For the latest news on the wildfires , read our Thursday live updates here. LOS ANGELES — With thick plumes of smoke, towering flames and mass evacuations, a fast-moving wildfire struck one of America’ s major cities on Wednesday.

Parts of Southern California were under a flash flood watch Wednesday as areas of the southwest saw the first significant rainfall of a delayed wet season that fueled wildfires and forced intermittent power cutoffs to millions of residents.

a group of bushes and trees: New drought resistant root stocks in the ground at the Spottswoode Winery.© Martin E. Klimek, USA TODAY New drought resistant root stocks in the ground at the Spottswoode Winery.

The storm system brought heavy rain to portions of Arizona, and Phoenix could get 2 inches of rain before the rain ends there on Thursday. Prior to this storm, Sky Harbor International Airport had officially recorded only 3.68 inches for the entire year.

Los Angeles has only had one day of traceable rain in almost two months. But an upper level, low pressure system approaching the California coast was bringing "significantly cooler and showery conditions" to the Los Angeles and San Diego areas, the National Weather Service said.

PG&E: Power shutoffs possible for NorCal counties this week

  PG&E: Power shutoffs possible for NorCal counties this week Pacific Gas and Electric Co. says it's monitoring a "potentially strong offshore wind event" Wednesday that could prompt the utility to turn off the power for customers in Northern California. The potential shutoffs would affect customers in the Sierra foothills, North Valley and North Bay, according to a news release from PG&E.

Rain has come to northern California , helping to contain deadly wildfires but bringing fears of mudslides that may complicate recovery efforts. Some four to six inches of rain (10-15cm) are expected to fall in the coming days, and some areas have been warned to prepare for flash flooding.

But that was far from all they got to enjoy. Fire officials said rain is helping the fight against the deadliest blaze in California in the past century. Authorities have finally surrounded a Southern California wildfire that destroyed some 1,600 homes and other buildings and left three people dead.

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Power outages, again? 750,000 people in Northern California could be left in the dark this week, PG&E warns

There will be some mountain snow and a slight chance for thunderstorms, with showers lingering into Thursday, forecasters said.

"The first rain of the season is about to arrive, but at the moment it is nothing to write home about," the weather service said in a statement early Wednesday. "There is not much rain so far."

Still, the weather service said the "best dynamics" for rain will be focused from Los Angeles County to Orange County with much less shower activity across Ventura and other counties northwest of the city.

Rain has been so rare that the Los Angeles Times included a link on "How to drive in the rain" on its website.

Sen. Kamala Harris: As climate crisis makes fires worse, here are some solutions

  Sen. Kamala Harris: As climate crisis makes fires worse, here are some solutions This isn’t normal. We’ve always had wildfires, but not like this. Hurricane-force winds, simultaneous blazes raging with no end in sight, mass blackouts to prevent the next catastrophe. With every passing wildfire season, the threat gets more intense and the strain on families and communities intensifies. Families are traumatized by the constant fear and endless stress of narrowly missing one fire just to be hit with another. People are fleeing homes sometimes with just the clothes on their backs and a few family photos. They don’t know if they have enough medication to last the week. They don’t know if their community will still be standing when the sun comes up.

Fire officials have warned that the danger is not over , but they feel they are beginning to get a handle on the massive wildfires in Wine Country and elsewhere. Officials said the fight was still far from done, but they're beginning to get good news.

California ’ s most destructive fires often occur in the autumn, when vegetation has had the long, hot When it was finally extinguished, the. … Read More Photograph by Mark Thiessen. Wildfires pose new threats as homes burn, releasing toxic fumes. Climate change is contributing to California ’ s fires .

To the east, the rains were in full force Wednesday. Caltrans was tweeting warnings of flooding on multiple roads. The National Weather Service issued a flash flood warning for San Bernardino and Riverside counties, saying localized, heavy rainfall could drive mudslides through steep terrain in recently burned areas.

Still, much of the state remained in dire need of precipitation. More than 81% of the state is considered "abnormally" dry, including a small percentage in the first stages of drought, according to the most recent U.S. Drought Monitor.

Pacific Gas & Electric was tentatively scheduled to preemptively cut power to hundreds of thousands of residents of more than a dozen counties in Northern and Central California.

"The decision was based on weather forecasts indicating the potential for high winds and dry conditions leading to increased fire risk," PG&E said in a statement.

Contributing: Doyle Rice, USA TODAY; Ayano Nagaishi and Chris Coppola, Arizona Republic

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Rain is finally coming to Los Angeles - but California's wildfire threat is far from over

PG&E Loses Challenge to Law Holding It Liable for Fire Damage .
PG&E has lost a challenge to a California law that holds it liable for property damage from fires related to its equipment, a win for wildfire victims seeking to collect billions of dollars in the utility’s bankruptcy. © Carolyn Cole/Los Angeles Times/TNS/Zuma PressJudge Dennis Montali said Wednesday the principle of inverse condemnation applies to PG&E, rejecting an argument that the utility was attempting to invoke to limit the amount it owes for homes and businesses destroyed by the fires.

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