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Banks

California regulator flags concerns over PG&E's wildfire safety measures

FILE PHOTO: Firefighters battle a fire following an explosion at Geary Boulevard and Parker Avenue as PG&E officials dig up the ground to reach the pipe in San Francisco, California, U.S, February 6, 2019. Santiago Mejia/San Francisco Chronicle/Pool via REUTERS/File Photo

(Reuters) - The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) has raised concerns over certain deficiencies that it says could affect PG&E Corp’s ability to provide safe and reliable service, the power provider disclosed in a regulatory filing on Wednesday.

The regulator, in a letter bit.ly/37007E8 to PG&E dated Tuesday, said it will require remediation on specific issues identified in the San Francisco-based utility's wildfire mitigation plan progress reports.

PG&E emerged from bankruptcy in July, marking an end to a long-drawn restructuring process which began after its equipment sparked some of the deadliest wildfires in California.

CPUC said its concerns arose from what appeared to be a pattern of vegetation and asset management deficiencies.

The regulator said its staff had “identified a volume and rate of defects in PG&E’s vegetation management that is notably higher than those observed for the other utilities.”

CPUC said a fact-finding initiative is underway to determine if the regulator needed to place PG&E into the “enhanced oversight and enforcement process.”

Reporting by Shradha Singh in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber

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