August 24, 2023 | Rachel Paun

NewsNation (AUG 21, 2023 / 10:22 PM CDT) — Hawaiian Electric Co. is facing multiple lawsuits following the Maui wildfires. At least one of the suits alleges that the electric company contributed to the cause of the devastation.

“Hawaii Electric’s equipment started this fire, and it was entirely preventable,” Watts Guerra partner Mikal Watts told the San Antonio Express-News.

Watts told NBC News that the company’s own documents showed “they knew how to prevent it.”

In a funding request last year from the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission, Hawaii Electric reportedly said it needed more money to make sure their facilities were not going to be “the origin or a contributing source of ignition for a wildfire.”

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Famed trial attorney Jay Edelson says similar cases have been tried before and punitive damages have been awarded.

“I think there has to be some accountability,” Edelson told “On Balance” host Leland Vittert, later adding: “The utility company is going to pay.”

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