KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — A motion to change a ruling that dismissed a lawsuit filed by victims of the 2016 Gatlinburg wildfires has been denied by a federal judge, while cases filed by several insurance companies are still able to move forward.

Federal Judge Ronnie Greer dismissed the lawsuits filed by several individual plaintiffs claiming that the National Park Service failed properly warn local residents and others about the deadly fire in a Feb. 28 memorandum opinion and order.

Greer agreed with the government lawyers that the claim that the National Park Service failed to warn neighboring communities about the fire was only included in the original lawsuit filed by the insurance companies, not by the the individual victims. Greer ruled that government was protected from the other claims raised by the individual plaintiffs under sovereign immunity.

Despite the victims’ argument that they had received a letter from the federal government that said sufficient forms had been filed to notify the government of the lawsuit’s claim that the National Park Service was negligent in their failure to warn people in the surrounding area, Greer ruled that the plaintiffs has not fulfilled the FTCA requirement to notify the government in a timely manner.

Greer cited the Federal Tort Claims Act in his ruling dismissing the motion to alter or amend the Feb. 28 dismissal. The FTCA says you can’t sue the government until you’ve exhausted all administrative means that are available.

Despite the new decision from a judge, lawsuits filed by American Reliable Insurance Company, State Farm Fire and Casualty Company, United Services Automobile Association, Allstate Fire and Casualty Insurance Company, and Auto-Owners Insurance Company were allowed to continue.

This is a developing story. Download the WATE 6 News app to get updates sent to your phone.

The 2016 Gatlinburg wildfires killed 14 people and caused an estimated $2 billion in damages.