State Farm to pursue NV Energy in 2011 wildfire that destroyed 26 Reno homes

RENO — State Farm Insurance plans to seek action against NV Energy for claims stemming from a November 2011 wildfire in Reno sparked by arcing power lines.

The wind-whipped fire destroyed 26 homes and damaged 17. It also caused about $7.6 million in property damage and more than $1.5 million in fire­fighting costs.

State Farm has sent letters to affected customers notifying them that the company will file action against NV Energy through a long-standing industry practice known as subrogation, the Reno Gazette-Journal reported.

It’s a legal action that can be taken by insurance companies against a third party they believe to be responsible for damage sustained by customers.

NV Energy spokesman Calder Chism said the company was unaware that State Farm was planning to take the action. He said NV Energy does not comment on pending lawsuits.

State Farm urged customers to call the phone number on the letters if they have any questions.

“Any questions they have regarding any claims are best addressed through their insurer,” State Farm spokeswoman Angela Thorpe said.

A Reno Fire Department report states that a tree branch probably was blown into lines, and the 1,935-acre fire was fanned by gusts of up to 85 mph.

While the report did not make any recommendations, Reno Fire Marshal Joan Presley said underground power lines would have prevented the blaze.


Comment section guidelines

The below comment section contains thoughts and opinions from users that in no way represent the views of the Las Vegas Review-Journal. This public platform is intended to provide a forum for users of reviewjournal.com to share ideas, express thoughtful opinions and carry the conversation beyond the article. Users must follow the guidelines under our Commenting Policy and are encouraged to use the moderation tools to help maintain civility and keep discussions on topic.

View Comments