Ruling to dismiss Gatlinburg wildfires suit brought forward by insurance companies partially granted

Tennessee

GATLINBURG, Tenn. (WATE) — A lawsuit filed by insurance companies after the 2016 Gatlinburg wildfires can now proceed.

That’s the decision from a federal judge about the US government’s request to dismiss the case.

The government’s attorneys have been arguing that the actions of the National Park Service in responding to the wildfires fall under a rule protecting the government from lawsuits.

The judge agreed when it comes to actions like monitoring the fires and other decisions about the process of managing the fires; however, the judge found that there was a requirement to follow an established plan and not make a judgment call when it comes to notifying neighboring communities.

The fire killed 14 people and caused an estimated $2 billion in losses.

We’ll continue to follow this case as it moves through the courts.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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