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2007: Fifth suit filed in deadly Immokalee arson fire

Fifth suit filed in deadly Immokalee arson fire

by Ryan Mills of the Naples Daily News

A fifth lawsuit has been filed against the owner of an Immokalee trailer park where a fire broke out earlier this month killing five people and seriously injuring five others.

The lawsuit was filed on behalf of Juana Vasquez, the sister of Victoriano Vasquez Lopez of Guatemala, whose wife, Pascuala Mendez, 34, and daughter, Luciana Vasquez, 13, were killed in the blaze. Lopez's 16-year-old son, Wilder Vasquez, was seriously burned in the fire and remains hospitalized in the burn unit of Tampa General Hospital, said Steve Meyers, an Orlando attorney who is representing the family.

Juana Vasquez, who lives in Immokalee, has been deemed the family's personal representative, Meyers said.

The lawsuit, filed Thursday in Collier County Circuit Court, claims the wrongful death of Mendez and Luciana and personal injury of Wilder. The defendant in the lawsuit is Cleveland A. Blocker, who owns Cleve's Trailer Park, 713 Second Ave.

The lawsuit claims that Blocker failed to provide adequate security at the trailer park, negligently operated and maintained the premises, overcrowded lessees into the trailer, and failed to provide smoke detectors, fire alarms and fire extinguishers.

"So far all the indications are there were no smoke alarms in that trailer, which is a violation of landlord-tenant statute," Meyers said. "The second area in which we feel Mr. Blocker was negligent was there was chicken wire over at least one window. ... We think at least one child was trying to get out of that window."

Meyers said his investigation into the fire showed that the people living in the trailer were paying more than $1,200 a month in rent.

"I think the public's impression of these trailer parks is it's an old, decrepit trailer ... and the people are paying very little money," Meyers said. "These people are paying about $1,200 a month. ... They are paying rent that would get you a nice apartment in Naples."

Meyers would not specify what the family is seeking in damages, but said it would be "well in excess of a million dollars."

Bruce Aebel, a Tampa attorney who is representing Blocker, said he hasn't seen the lawsuit and wouldn't comment on it.

The trailer fire broke out about 2:30 a.m. on March 4. It has been classified as arson. Authorities said the trailer had been the target of arson at least once before.

Four other lawsuits were filed against Blocker in mid-March by three people who were injured in the fire and the sister of a man who was killed in the blaze.

Under state rules the trailers must be inspected every six weeks. The trailer that burned was last inspected on Dec. 26, 2006, and on Feb. 16, 2007. No major problems were found during those inspections, and Collier County Code Enforcement had no complaints about the trailer.

Who is behind the web site www.pgewitness.com


For a list of my customers and clients click here.  The list references decades of how my customers have been murdered.

  1. I am a former PG&E Contract Programmer.  
  2. I remain unpaid, 
  3. I’ve been beaten regularly for ten years or longer 
  4. My software clients and customers over 35 years are:
    1. PG&E, Bank of America 
    2. Wells Fargo Bank 
    3. AT&T formerly SBC Services (AT&T Reverse merger)
    4. Wendy's 
    5. Tony Romas 
    6. AT&T
    7. PacBell 
    8. Contra Costa County 
    9. Contra Costa College District 
    10. GE Nuclear 
    11. City of Walnut Creek. 

PG&E Self-Reports Additional Emails to CPUC

PG&E Self-Reports Additional Emails to CPUC
SAN FRANCISCO — PG&E today (Oct. 6) reported additional communications that it believes violated California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) rules governing ex parte communications with the state regulator. Ex parte communications are those that take place with decision-makers without the knowledge of all parties to a proceeding.
The communications were identified in conjunction with PG&E’s voluntary internal review of more than 65,000 emails exchanged with the CPUC over a nearly five-year period, which has been concluded. In addition, PG&E has been notified by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in San Francisco that it has begun an investigation in connection with these ex parte communications, with which the company will cooperate.
“We’ve made it clear that we are committed to complying with both the letter and the spirit of the law and PG&E’s own Code of Conduct at all times. No excuses. Our customers and the communities we serve expect no less. We took immediate and definitive action, self-reported these violations, held individuals accountable and are making significant changes designed to prevent this from happening again,” said PG&E Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Tony Earley.
The communications being reported today are in addition to email communications that the company self-reported on September 15 involving the pending Gas Transmission & Storage rate case. Of the ex parte communications being reported today, one involved a series of emails between a PG&E officer and a CPUC commissioner. The other communication involved an email from a PG&E officer to his supervisor summarizing an oral communication with a CPUC commissioner. The two PG&E personnel involved in these communications are no longer working at the company as a result of the emails that were self-reported earlier.
In conjunction with self-reporting the first set of emails, PG&E announced:
  • That three officers will no longer be employed by the company.
  • The appointment of a new senior vice president of regulatory affairs.
  • The creation of the new role of chief regulatory compliance officer, whose mandate is to help oversee compliance with all requirements governing PG&E’s interactions with the CPUC. The position reports to the CEO and to the Audit Committee of the PG&E Board of Directors.
  • The engagement of former Secretary of the U.S. Department of Interior Ken Salazar, a partner in the WilmerHale law firm, as special counsel on regulatory compliance matters to assist in developing a best-in-class regulatory compliance model. Salazar has deep experience in regulatory and energy matters.
  • A commitment to creating updated and enhanced training for all employees who routinely interact with PG&E’s regulators.
In a filing with the Commission last week, PG&E admitted the violations in the pending Order to Show Cause and said it expects a penalty. PG&E is scheduled to appear before the Commission regarding the penalty tomorrow.
Today’s PG&E notifications to the CPUC can be read here.


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