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Pedrógão Grande fire was 'started by an electrical discharge' - concludes report

FireLeiriaSmallCarsAt least seven further defendants have been identified in a prosecution resulting from the great fire of Pedrógão Grande, last summer.

The investigation finally is over and has concluded that an electric discharge did cause the flames that turned into an inferno, killing at least 64 people and injuring at least 200.

EDP and Ascendi both have denied any role in starting the blaze which has been blamed on an electricity cable touching a tree.

All-in-all, nine defendants have been identified in the report in to the June 2017 fire. The Public Prosecutor's Office is preparing to extend the list by adding the second in command of the Civil Protection service for Leiria and the Commander of the Firefighters of Pedrógão, plus at least another seven names.

Among them are the mayors of Pedrôgão Grande, Figueiró dos Vinhos and Castanheira de Pera, the areas most affected, who were in office at the time of the fires.

Two senior civil protection officials, EDP and Ascendi, also will be indicted, even after a legal opinion commissioned by Ascendi determined the two companies were not culpable.

All of the defendants in the case are suspected of negligent manslaughter and will soon be receiving their notifications though the post.

One of the conclusions is that an electric shock causes the fire that ended up consuming thousands of hectares of forest and took over a week to extinguish.

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0 #4 Jim Talbot 2018-01-19 11:45
This is grandstanding of the highest order. There is no mechanism in place today in Portugal to bring the Portuguese elite to heel. The 1974 Revolution intentionally never attempted anything of the sort and still no one has subsequently attempted it. If the cause really was a tree brushing a power line then a low level EDP / Ascendi sub-contractor will be finally wheeled forward to actually take any rap.
Years later he will walk free having claimed this stretch of line was never entered on his 'To Do' list. Everything then archived as the minor functionary allocating work to the sub-contractor has retired and cannot be found to testify. You read it here first!
-1 #3 nogin the nog 2018-01-19 11:00
my concern is not weather it was deliberate or an act of God. But what is being done to help the fire brigade deal with the forth coming fire season. :cry:
All thou those responsible for miss leading us with a lightning strike . Going as far as too find the actual tree it struck are below contempt and should not be in public office..
-1 #2 Peter Booker 2018-01-19 09:41
Spread the blame. It is the little fellows who will be hammered.

The fire was caused by faulty maintenance work by EDP. It is EDP who should shoulder most of the blame, but because is a large monopoly, rich enough to employ teams of jesuitical lawyers, it will almost certainly escape scot free.

The other charges must result from the response to the disaster. In other words, Civil Protection is not up to the job, nor does the road company keep the roadside vegetation under control.

And the mayors? Perhaps for not updating their disaster plan. An unfortunate administrative oversight.
+8 #1 Jack Reacher 2018-01-19 00:57
So much for all those that pointed the finger at climate change as the reason. Every single fire started last year from some form of human related catalyst. Blaming climate change is too convenient.

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