Oakland Reaches $32.7 Million Settlement With 32 Ghost Ship Fire Victims & Families

The deadly 2016 fire killed 36 and injured dozens more.
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The city of Oakland has agreed to a $32.7 million settlement with the victims and families of the Ghost Ship warehouse fire tragedy in 2016. The fire killed 36 and injured dozens more.

The $32.7 million settlement will go to 32 families of those killed in the blaze and one survivor. Sam Maxwell, who was left with permanent lifelong injuries and major medical bills, will get $9.2 million, while $23.5 million will go to the 32 families of those killed in the fire, coming out to $734,000 per family.

Attorney Mary Alexander, who represented the families of 13 victims, said to Mercury News said that the lawsuit included 12 people who lived at the 31st Avenue Ghost Ship warehouse and escaped the fire. The city has not settled with them yet.

An analysis by the Mercury News showed that police, fire, public works and building department employees visited the Ghost Ship warehouse and other nearby properties at least 245 times since 1988, mostly after 2007.

Beyond the city, PG&E and the owners of the warehouse, the Ng family, are also named in the suit, but no other announcements have been made regarding possible settlements.

The warehouse master tenant Derick Almena faces a retrial in the criminal case after the jury reached a 10-2 verdict and not a unanimous verdict. His former co-defendant Max Harris was acquitted of all charges. 

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