Category: Blog

PALISADES FIRE (2021-05-14)

May 17, 2021, 10 am – Location is Palisades Court and Michael Lane, Topanga Canyon, Los Angeles, CA. This is a Los Angeles County Fire Department event.

Fire is active and no hikers or observers are permitted in the fire area.

No structures reported damaged at this time. Water dropping helicopters are working the fire, fixed wing aircraft must wait until the marine layer (clouds) lift to 4,000′ per LAC Fire.

Cause is suspicious. One individual was detained, questioned and arrested (adult male) by LAFD Arson Investigators.

Mandatory evacuation in effect; hard closure Topanga/Mulholland and Topanga/PCH. #palisadesfire #lafd @calfire

2021 CALIFORNIA FIRE SEASON

 

GOVERNOR NEWSOM EXPANDS DROUGHT EMERGENCY TO KLAMATH RIVER, SACRAMENTO-SAN JOAQUIN DELTA AND TULARE LAKE WATERSHED COUNTIES

May 12, 2021 – California Governor Gavin Newsom expanded his April 21 drought emergency proclamation to a total of 41 counties representing 30 percent of the state’s population.

Early warm temperatures and extremely dry soils are named the cause for less runoff from the Sierra-Cascade snowpack, resulting in “historic and unanticipated reductions in the amount of water flowing to major reservoirs, especially in Klamath River, Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta and Tulare Lake Watershed counties.

A copy of the press release is here.

Continue reading “2021 CALIFORNIA FIRE SEASON”

FEHA Complaints can Protect California Workers from Employment Discrimination


In California, workers are protected from discrimination by law. Some of the strongest employee protections are found in “FEHA,” the Fair Employment and Housing Act.

FEHA prohibits harassment and discrimination in employment because of race, color, religion, sex, gender, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, marital status, national origin, ancestry, mental and physical disability, medical condition, age, pregnancy, denial of medical and family care leave, or pregnancy disability leave (Government Code sections 12940,12945, 12945.2) and/or retaliation for protesting illegal discrimination related to one of these categories.

FEHA also prohibits retaliation for reporting patient abuse in tax supported institutions.
Continue reading “FEHA Complaints can Protect California Workers from Employment Discrimination”

INSURANCE BAD FAITH DISCOVERY BASICS

Insurance bad faith cases are usually hard fought and the fighting can be bitter.

Generally speaking, when we take on a carrier for acting contrary to its insured’s interests and allege those actions are malicious justifying punitive damages, the folks on the defense side tend to take it personally.

So, the first rule of discovery in the bad faith case is, assume you are in for a tough fight.  Which, in turn, leads to the second and third rules: know your adversary and be prepared.

The bad news that the general practitioner faces in prosecuting a bad faith case is that the defense team will usually be much better schooled in the fine points of insurance than an attorney who does not work with insurance matters on a daily basis.

The good news that the general practitioner can take heart from is that the purpose of bad faith law is to act as an equalizer between the powerful carriers who adjust claims for a living and the ordinary insured who probably never wanted to have a claim and, with luck, will never have another.  Insurance regulations require that insurance companies keep a record of all material claims decisions.  So, where there is wrongdoing, there is almost always a record of the bad acts waiting to be uncovered.

The key discovery strategy in defending bad faith cases is to deny the plaintiff information.  However, if you know where and how to dig, it’s not that difficult to get the evidence you need to put on your successful case. Continue reading “INSURANCE BAD FAITH DISCOVERY BASICS”

ZOGG FIRE CAUSED BY PG&E ELECTRICAL LINES: CAL FIRE

Mar. 22, 2021 – Cal Fire investigators have determined last year’s Zogg Fire was caused by a pine tree contacting Pacific Gas & Electric Co. electrical distribution lines north of the community of Igo.

The Zogg Fire started on September 27, 2020 and burned a total of 56,338 acres, destroyed 204 structures and caused four deaths.

An investigative report on the fire has been forwarded to the Shasta County District Attorney’s Office.

CALIFORNIA FIRE WATCH

See Cal Fire Incident Information

May 4, 2021 – SOUTHERN FIRE UPDATE: Cal Fire still reporting 5184 acres burned. Now 55% contained as of 1:28 am. @CALFIRESANDIEGO #SouthernFire

May 3, 2021 – SOUTHERN FIRE UPDATE: 5,184 acres burned. 25% contained. (per Cal Fire) 500 residents evacuated from Butterfield Ranch Campground and 3 structures destroyed. (per Times of San Diego) @CALFIRESANDIEGO #SouthernFire

May 2, 2021 – SOUTHERN FIRE: This is a Cal Fire San Diego event. Date Started: 5/2/2021. Acres burned at this writing: 2,900, 0% contained. Location: 14000 Blk Great Southern Overland, Aqua Caliente in San Diego County.

FIRE FIGHTING AIRCRAFT AND AVIATION

Credit: Christian Murdock

April 27, 2021 – The Associated Press is reporting that the world’s largest firefighting airplane, a Boeing 747-400 Global SuperTanker, is being taken out of service as uneconomic. The SuperTanker has a 19,400-gallon capacity and is being taken out of service just as experts are predicting an especially nasty fire season in the West due to drought conditions. During the 2020 fire season, there were 58,950 wildfires that burned 15,816 acres, according to the National Interagency Fire Center in Idaho. In 2020, federal and state agencies dropped over 56 million gallons of fire retardant costing an average of $3.10 per gallon. Retardant is used primarily in the Western US and there is disagreement among experts as to its efficacy. The SuperTanker has been deployed primarily in California and Oregon.

Wrongful death from a California wildfire

Deaths related to fires are always tragedies. Sometimes, there is no one who can be held accountable in court. Other times, there is an individual or entity legally responsible for the death of a loved one. In a natural disaster such as the fires in California in 2020, do not assume that no one is liable for the tragic death of a loved one. Investigations may find that a person or company has contributed to the wildfires, giving a family member cause to file an unlawful death claim. Daniels Law can help with these claims.

The tragic loss of life caused by other people’s negligence or recklessness cries out for justice. A Cal Fire report found PG & E Co. equipment as the cause of the  Zogg Fire, and further investigations are underway.

If investigations show that a power company or other person or entity could reasonably have prevented a wildfires with due care, surviving family members of the deceased may have reasons to file wrongful death claims against the person responsible. A death is “wrongful” if the actions of a person or organization result in death. Negligence, wanton disregard for the safety of others, and intentional injury can all result in an unwarranted death. You will need the help of a lawyer to determine whether your case has merit as a wrongful death lawsuit after a California Wildfire. Continue reading “Wrongful death from a California wildfire”

Brain injury from a fall or accident causing personal injury

A blow to the head is a serious matter.

It could be a car accident, or maybe a trip / slip / stumble and fall.

The human skull does a pretty good job of protecting the human brain.

But it doesn’t protect perfectly.

So we see people with brain injuries of all kinds. The obvious injuries are where the skull is broken, when you can see brain tissue through an open wound, which is pretty good evidence that the brain is injured.

What many people do not know: Sometimes people suffer a brain injury even with the skull intact.

Many of these are so-called “acceleration injuries.” This means that a blow suddenly pushes the head in one direction, and when the head stops moving, the brain tissue inside does not. Continue reading “Brain injury from a fall or accident causing personal injury”