On the afternoon of November 8, 2018, the Woolsey Fire began in Woolsey Canyon, located near the border between Los Angeles County and Ventura County.
Due to strong Santa Ana winds, the fire quickly spread, impacting areas in both counties, including Agoura Hills, Malibu, Oak Park, West Hills, Bell Canyon, Calabasas, Thousand Oaks, and Westlake Village. The Woolsey Fire would not be fully contained until November 21, 2018. As of December 2019, the Insurance Information Institute reports that the Woolsey Fire is the 7th most destructive California wildfire.
The Woolsey Fire, by the numbers
- 3 deaths
- Over 295,000 people evacuated
- 96,949 acres burned
- 1,643 structures destroyed
- 364 structures damaged
- $52 million in fire suppression costs
- Insured losses estimated to be between $3 billion and $5 billion
What caused the Woolsey Fire?
The severity of the Woolsey Fire was bolstered by several different factors, including strong winds and unusually dry conditions. In a report published by the County of Los Angeles in November 2019, the cause of the Woolsey Fire was still under investigation. However, it was reported in February 2019 that Southern California Edison (SCE) was being investigated by regulators in connection to the Woolsey Fire.
Incident reports made to the California Public Utilities Commission show that SCE had experienced equipment issues in the area where the Woolsey Fire began within minutes of the fire starting. In a filing made with the Securities and Exchange Commission, SCE stated that they believe their equipment may have been associated with causing the Woolsey Fire. In April 2019, Los Angeles County filed a lawsuit against SCE for over $100 million in damages related to the Woolsey Fire.
The Woolsey Fire isn’t the only California wildfire to be associated with SCE. Following the 2017 Thomas Fire, an investigation found that equipment belonging to SCE was at least partly responsible for starting the fire that killed two people and burned over 281,00 acres of land.
In addition to the Woolsey and Thomas Fires, SCE has also been linked to the Mill Creek Fire, Riverside County Fire, Stearns Warf Fire, Big Creek Forest Fire, Malibu Canyon Fire, Nightsky Fire, San Bernardino National Forest Fire, Roadrunner Fire, Rey Fire, and Saddleridge Fire.
Claims for damages caused by the Woolsey Fire
Even if you have insurance, it very likely won’t cover the full extent of the damages caused by Woolsey Fire. When you work with The Wallace Firm, we’ll fight for you to recover damages such as:
- Damage to your home
- Damages to other structures on your property
- Loss of personal property
- Lost income
- Costs of temporary housing and other costs associated with evacuation
- Emotional distress
- Funeral expenses
Contact a Woolsey Fire attorney
The Wallace Firm is representing victims of Woolsey Fire in claims against Southern California Edison for their role in this devastating wildfire. Our team has strong personal ties to the communities impacted by the Woolsey Fire and we want to help those who have been impacted rebuild their lives. We can help you seek damages above and beyond what you’ve recovered from insurance. Even if you don’t have insurance or if you rent your home, we can still help you recover damages. Contact us today for help with your case.