wildfires News

California May Boost Rules for Homes at High Wildfire Risk

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Years of increasingly deadly California wildfires spurred lawmakers to consider regulations Tuesday that would toughen local governments’ requirements for approving housing developments in high-risk areas. A state Senate committee voted 8-3 Monday to advance a measure requiring …

PG&E Gets Approval to Pay Employees $350 Million to Meet Safety Goals After Wildfires

SAN FRANCISCO — PG&E Corp can pay employees up to $350 million in bonuses this year to spur them to help meet the bankrupt California power provider’s safety goals to prevent wildfires, a judge said on Tuesday. PG&E’s management has …

Washington State Considers Raising Insurance Tax to Help Fight Wildfires

With an increasing number of forest fires scorching portions of Washington each year, the Legislature is considering a proposal to create a fund dedicated to preventing and battling wildfires. In March, Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz and state Senate …

Investigators Pin Thomas Fire on Southern California Power Lines

One of the largest fires in California history was sparked by Southern California Edison power lines that came into contact during high winds, investigators said Wednesday. The resulting arc ignited dry brush on Dec. 4, 2017, starting the blaze in …

California Wildfires Left Toxic Threats Behind

PARADISE, Calif. — As an uncontrollable wildfire turned the California town of Paradise to ash, air pollution researcher Keith Bein knew he had to act fast: Little is known about toxic chemicals released when a whole town burns and the …

Investors Ignored PG&E Warning About Disasters

PG&E Corp. told investors repeatedly that weather-related disasters were a risk, but many didn’t pay enough attention until the company was on the brink of bankruptcy. The company included warnings in its regulatory filings and offering prospectuses citing how disasters …

Report: Fire-Resistant Homes Don’t Have to Cost a Fortune

Homes in wildfire-prone areas around the U.S. could be built to better withstand blazes without increasing the cost of construction, according to a new report. The research released Tuesday was sponsored in part by the insurance industry and marks the …

Technology Shapes Insurers’ Wildfire Response

As wildfires raged this month in California, insurance claims experts at Travelers sat in a command center 3,000 miles (4,828 kilometers) away in Connecticut, monitoring screens showing satellite images, photos from airplane flyovers and social media posts describing what was …

Incoming Governors More Likely to Face Natural Disasters

Governors have a wide range of priorities they want to tackle in the coming year, from tax reform to education. Yet it’s a topic that receives less attention on the campaign trail and in their speeches that could determine their …

Fires, Flooding, Record Cold Expected for Thanksgiving Holiday

Fires and flooding on the West Coast, record cold and gusty winds on the East Coast. Brace yourself for Thanksgiving week, 2018. Northern California could get as much as 7 inches (18 centimeters) of rain, according to forecasters. The good …