In response to a court order issued by Federal Probation Judge William Alsup, utility company PG&E had denied any knowledge of drone operations near the origin of the Dixie Fire – the second-largest recorded wildfire in California’s history. However, the court is now questioning PG&E’s claims, indicating that the company might know something about the drone after all.

In a court filing, PG&E had said it could not identify any individual or company who flew a drone near the Dixie Fire on the evening of July 13, 2021, when the fire started. More specifically, the utility insisted that no PG&E employee or contractor was instructed to, or did, fly a drone near the Dixie Fire on the day of its origin.

To recap quickly, a water-dropping helicopter operated by the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (Cal Fire) was forced to halt fire mitigation operations on the evening of July 13 when an unidentified drone appeared over the blaze.