Flooding – The Final Stage of Fire Litigation

images of flooding after a fire

Flooding – The Final Stage of Fire Litigation

NBC reports that the rain in Los Angeles County brought flooding to “burn-scarred” areas of L.A. When a region is burn-scarred, that means fires have occurred that radically changed the landscape, burning away vegetation such as shrubs, trees, and grass to leave hard earth exposed.

This hard earth can have a very hard time absorbing even moderate rainwater, and in hilly areas such as the San Gabriel Foothills, flooding can occur. It might be odd to think of floods as the final steps in a fire, but the award-winning fire litigation attorneys at Singleton Schreiber, understand the damage of any wildfire can take months, even up to a year to fully assess.

Flood Damage

Flood damage in areas such as the San Gabriel Valley begins with fires. Take for example the Silverado Fire in Orange County California. First, the fires burned away the hillsides, damaging homes, threatening lives, and destroying property. Next came a period of heat that essentially “cooked” the earth, making the exposed dirt hard and unable to absorb water. Finally, some heavy rains came and immediately caused flooding which further damaged homes and property and even threatened the lives of some residents.

This process occurs over and over and is not just an issue in California. The McBride Fire in New Mexico occurred in a region with hilly and mountainous topography. This means the water can flow and build up speed quickly, wiping out anything in its path. Worse, there is often very little warning for when a flood might occur or even the direction or path it will take. As the burn-scarred land exposes new ditches, areas previously untouched by floods can become overwhelmed with little to no notice.

For this reason, the flood attorneys at Singleton Schreiber warn any individual or business subjected to fire damage that this is only the beginning of problems.

How Did Fires Occur?

State investigations in California, New Mexico, Arizona, and throughout the nation find that fires are started by large utility companies such as PG&E. These poorly maintained or poorly located, equipment and power lines get destroyed by high winds or other storms. These then fall on dry leaves or trees, and fires spark in a short period of time. These fires wipe out landscapes and create major news.

Incidents such as:

  • McBride Fire
  • Fairview Fire
  • Mill Fire
  • Camp Fire
  • Hermits Peak and Calf Canyon Fires

All of these were the result of downed powerlines. In fact, the Hermits Peak disaster is normally referred to as the Hermits Peak and Calf Canyon Fires and Mudslides because of this fire/flood phenomenon.

If you’re the victim of this type of damage, you need qualified, experienced attorneys who can litigate these types of cases. Whether you were simply evacuated or suffered life-threatening injuries, Singleton Schreiber can help you sort through insurance problems, government programs, and more to get maximum compensation. Unfortunately, for homeowners throughout the Southwest, fires are only the first step in fire litigation. But, with Singleton Schreiber, our legal team will work with you every step of the way to help take care of you, your family, your property, and your future.