New York — PG&E, owner of the biggest US power utility by number of customers, said on Monday it is preparing to file for chapter 11 bankruptcy for all of its businesses as it faces potentially crushing liabilities linked to catastrophic wildfires in 2017 and 2018. The company’s shares tumbled 55% in early trading. PG&E faces widespread litigation, government investigations and liabilities that could potentially reach $30bn, according to the company, accounting for damage from fires in 2018 and in 2017. PGE said it plans to file for bankruptcy protection around January 29, and is giving a 15-day notice to employees, to comply with California law. PGE said on Sunday its CEO was leaving and being replaced by general counsel John Simon on an interim basis. The utility holding company said the bankruptcy process will not affect electric or natural gas services for 16-million customers. PGE is reeling from the November Camp fire that swept through the California mountain community of Par...

BL Premium

This article is reserved for our subscribers.

A subscription helps you enjoy the best of our business content every day along with benefits such as articles from our international business news partners; ProfileData financial data; and digital access to the Sunday Times and Sunday Times Daily.

Already subscribed? Simply sign in below.

Questions or problems? Email or call 0860 52 52 00. Got a subscription voucher? Redeem it now