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Survivors of 2009 Australia firestorm sue Singapore power firm

Published on Mar 4, 2013 2:59 PM
 
Survivors of a 2009 firestorm which killed 119 people in Australia launched a class action on Monday against a Singapore power company over the disaster which lawyers described as "entirely preventable". More than 10,000 people have joined the action against SP AusNet, which is majority owned by Singapore Power. -- FILE PHOTO: BLOOMBERG NEWS

SYDNEY (AFP) - Survivors of a 2009 firestorm which killed 119 people in Australia launched a class action on Monday against a Singapore power company over the disaster which lawyers described as "entirely preventable".

The Kilmore East blaze was the largest of the "Black Saturday" February 2009 wildfires in southern Victoria state that left 173 dead and razed more than 2,000 homes, the nation's worst natural disaster of modern times.

More than 10,000 people have joined the action against SP AusNet, which is majority owned by Singapore Power, over the Kilmore fire, which claimed 119 of the 173 lives lost.

Conservative estimates of the compensation payout are in the hundreds of millions of dollars, with a special courtroom purpose-built to accommodate the sheer volume of people involved in the case.

 
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