West News

Columbia River Train Derailment Costs Estimated to be $8.9M

Six months after a train hauling Bakken crude oil derailed along the Columbia River Gorge, Washington, Oregon and other officials are still tabulating a bill to send to Union Pacific Railroad. Union Pacific said in a statement that it is …

Washington 2017 Workers’ Comp Rate Will Increase Less Than 1%

The average premium for workers’ compensation coverage in Washington will go up less than 1 percent in 2017. The state Department of Labor & Industries (L&I) announced the rate will rise by an average of 0.7 percent next year. The …

Mastering the Blue Ridge Settlement Reservation of Rights, Part 2

A valid Blue Ridge reservation of rights requires more than the initial reservation of rights that warns the insureds that a later settlement payment may become subject to a reimbursement claim. In addition to that initial reservation of rights letter, …

Mastering the Blue Ridge Settlement Reservation of Rights, Part 1

For decades, California insurers have been told they have a duty to accept reasonable settlement demands within their policy’s limits. As the California Supreme Court emphasized in Johansen v. Cal. State Auto. Assn. Inter-Ins. Bureau, 15 Cal.3d 9, 16 (1975), …

New Maps Highlight History of Columbia River Gorge Landslides

The Columbia River Gorge is famous for sweeping dramatic vistas, but new research published by the U.S. Geological Survey reveals a shifting landscape beneath the forest. Three researchers with USGS mapped a history of 215 different landslides across 64 percent …

Hollywood Workplace Injury Statistics

Things can go wrong on film and television sets: a foot slips off a ladder, a stunt goes awry, a finger catches a blade meant to cut wood or shape props. Learning exactly how often workers are hurt or killed …

Denver Voters Approve Pot in Bars, Restaurants

A glass of wine with dinner? Or maybe some marijuana? Denver voters have approved a first-in-the-nation law allowing willing bars and restaurants to give patrons the option to use marijuana alongside a cocktail or meal. The catch: Smoking pot won’t …

Oregon Food Safety at Risk Due to Overdue Inspections

Rodents, insects and microscopic bacteria: All these hazards can exist in food and where it is stored, and it is up to the Oregon Department of Agriculture to ensure they’re not there. But the department’s Food Safety Program, which is …

Agency Finds Broken Axle Caused Seattle Ride the Ducks Crash

The National Transportation Safety Board ruled on Tuesday that the probable cause of the 2015 Ride the Ducks crash that killed five people and injured 69 was a mechanical failure and improper maintenance, as well as loopholes in federal oversight. …

Notice-Prejudice Rule Adopted in Wyoming

The Wyoming Supreme Court in Century Surety Co. v. Jim Hipner, LLC, 2016 WY 81, 377 P.3d 784 (2016), engaged in a jurisprudential review of the enforceability of non-prejudicial notice requirements in insurance policies and why courts have moved away …

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