Country Club Sues US Forest Service Over Station Fire

A Los Angeles County golf course has filed suit against the US Forest Service for damage that resulted from firefighting efforts at the Station Fire in August 2009. The La Cañada Flintridge Country Club filed the suit in US District Court on Monday seeking $49,528.81 in damages.

The Station Fire burned an estimated 160,000 acres, destroyed more than 200 buildings and killed 2 LA County firefighters. The country club alleges that US Forest Service helicopters used golf course ponds to refill their water tanks, and in the process damaged irrigation pumps and piping. The suit also seeks reimbursement for water that the golf course had to purchase to refill their ponds, and for the cost of cleaning up sand that had been blown out of the sand traps by the helicopters.

The country club had filed an administrative claim with the US Forest Service in 2009, but that claim was denied last November. The suit alleges two basic counts: negligence and conversion. Here is a copy of the complaint:  La Cañada Flintridge Country Club v. US Forest Service

More on the story.

About Curt Varone

Curt Varone has over 40 years of fire service experience and 30 as a practicing attorney licensed in both Rhode Island and Maine. His background includes 29 years as a career firefighter in Providence (retiring as a Deputy Assistant Chief), as well as volunteer and paid on call experience. He is the author of two books: Legal Considerations for Fire and Emergency Services, (2006, 2nd ed. 2011, 3rd ed. 2014) and Fire Officer's Legal Handbook (2007), and is a contributing editor for Firehouse Magazine writing the Fire Law column.
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