Pacific Gas & Electric, the nation's largest utility, faces manslaughter charges for its role in a deadly California wildfire that burned over 56,000 acres, a judge ruled Wednesday.

PG&E faces 11 felony and misdemeanor charges, including involuntary manslaughter and recklessly starting a fire. Twenty other charges were dismissed following a preliminary hearing.

A Shasta County judge ruled Wednesday that there was enough probable cause following the investigation into the fire to bring the utility service to trial, following the not-guilty plea it entered last summer.

Four people were killed, 204 structures were destroyed, and over 56,000 acres burned in the Zogg fire that started in September 2020. It was sparked by a gray pine tree that fell into a power line—on a day when temperatures peaked above 90 F. The fire then grew rapidly to the south, pushed by strong north winds.

An 8-year-old girl and her mother were among those caught by the flames while trying to drive away from their home.

In a statement, PG&E said the loss of life was tragic and while it accepted the conclusion its equipment caused the blaze, "we believe PG&E did not commit any crimes."

Local Shasta and Tehama Counties reached a civil settlement with PG&E for $12.36 million in May 2021. Last year, the California Public Utilities Commission proposed fining the utility more than $155 million, saying it had failed to take down the tree, which had been marked for removal.

PG&E has been at the center of more than 30 wildfires since 2017, wiping out more than 23,000 homes and businesses and killing more than 100 people.

In 2022, former executives at the utility agreed to a $117 million settlement in connection with the deadly 2017 North Bay fires and 2018 Camp fire. More than 100 people died between the two fires, and the Camp fire famously became the deadliest blaze in the state's history.

PG&E has an estimated 16 million customers in central and Northern California and serves a roughly 70,000 square-mile area.