Does my policy cover earthquake damage?

Q. Does my policy cover earthquake damage?

A. Like many others in the Northwest and around the world, I read Kathryn Schultz's excellent piece in The New Yorkerabout the impact "the really big one" will have on our region. It's a great read with a wealth of information about the science and history...

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How to defend against angry mountain goats

The widow of a man gored to death in 2010 by a mountain goat while hiking in the Olympics has lost a lawsuit accusing National Park officials of negligence.
     The incident was unusual because mountain goats typically are shy and docile. But some can be aggressive nuisances when they crave minerals...

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Don’t let your home be a mosquito haven

It’s a bad year for mosquito-borne West Nile Virus, and Oregon officials offer help – obvious and not-so-obvious – for how to lessen your risk of infection.
     The obvious: wear long-sleeved shirts and full-length pants when hiking. Ensure your screens on doors and windows have no holes. Eliminate...

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Seattle schools examine new start, stop times

by Sharlyn Petit
     Today, most Seattle high schools and middle schools start at 7:50 a.m. and end at 2:20 p.m. Elementary schools start between 8:40 a.m. and 9:30 a.m. and end between 2:50 p.m. and 3:40 p.m. That means sleep-deprived teens are dragging themselves out of bed and onto our roadways...

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Water supplies fair; fire chiefs map tanks, pools

Citing “fair” water supplies, Puget Sound-area city officials urge homeowners to conserve water until fall rains replenish reservoirs.
     Everett, Seattle, and Tacoma officials say their supplies should last through summer, but homes and businesses can save water to ensure that happens. You’ll find...

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Wolf likely killed livestock near Cle Elum

It’s a sticky, inevitable dilemma. For years, one school of thought clamored for reintroducing wolves to Washington’s wildlands, while rural livestock ranchers opposed it.
     The wolves returned, dispersing from northwest Montana in recent years. Occasionally, they hunted cattle in the remote...

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Something happened to my car. Will my policy pay for a rental car?

Q. Something happened to my car. Will my policy pay for a rental car?

A. After your vehicle has an unexpected loss, a plethora of thoughts may form. Is everyone okay? Am I okay? Perhaps the car was parked and you weren't inside it, but is your car okay? It's always a relief to learn no one is...

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Desolate two-lane highways offer vistas, serenity

Can you truly take a summer road trip on Northwest highways void of traffic and tension?
     Yes! I know because we just did that. Four fun days of leisurely cruising.
     The trick is simple: avoid freeways and divided highways. Seek out small towns and big rewards.
     Look at a road map of...

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Teen driver hits 200-pound black bear in Idaho

by Sharlyn Petit
     In the Northwest, we’re conditioned to stay alert at each deer-crossing sign we see. Our friends or relatives likely have a close-call collision story or two to tell.
     But what happens during an 80-mph run-in with a 200-pound black bear?
     Last week, one 16-year old found...

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Self-sufficient homeowners build their own fire gear

Wildfires continue to burn across the Northwest, prompting some rural residents to not only “Firewise” their property but to protect themselves with homemade fire trucks.
     Some of these makeshift rigs are pretty sophisticated.
     A recent Seattle Times article noted an Okanogan County retiree...

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