Evacuation Order

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2bucks

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Living in the PNW I never thought I'd be told to evacuate, but the reverse 911 call came about an hour ago. I live 4 blocks from the Puyallup River in Puyallup WA and it is expected to crest at 36 feet by 4am. Flood is 30.3 feet, the record crest is 34 feet in 1917.

As is the case with most stubborn folks we're not going anywhere. My house sits on a mound a*couple feet higher than the surrounding area so even if the yard floods, I might be safe. The roads on the other side of the river are all closed to incoming traffic and residents on that side are in very grave danger of severe flooding to all the homes. They live in a bowl with the levy on*one side and the raised railroad bed on the other side.

One of the contributing streams that runs into the Puyallup River is backed up and threatening closure of I-5, the main north/south corridor, one southbound lane is already closed. The rain is still coming down.

Is it too soon to start complaining that FEMA isn't here yet? Where is my $500.00 credit card to use at the strip club?

Ken
 
Good luck to you Ken.
We just drove back down I5 from Seattle today, and had heavy rain the whole trip. Every bridge we crossed seemed to have rivers at the top of their banks, and a lot of water close to the freeway in all the low areas. I guess we made it through before they closed part of the road.

Time to head to the boats!
 
I had an oil spill meeting in Olympia today and the nisqually delta was pretty full at noon when I came back. Like you it was just pouring buckets on me both ways. The news has 18 miles of I-5 in Chehalis closed now.

Have you ever been really happy to not be at work on a particular day? Today is mine.

Ken
 
Forget the FEMA card, they only did that in N'Awlins. Nothing like that for the Rita or Ike survivors. And the national flood insurance program is screwing everybody over as best they can. Hope you don't have to deal with them!
 
Ken, Saw some of the mess you have up there on the news this morning. Best of luck to you, keep your feet dry!!
 
In the Everett area there are several rivers and streams that have over flowed their banks.* Several employees have called in as the roads are closed and one house is flooded.* The Everett marina is at the mouth on the SnohomishRiver has extremely high waters and a lot of debris and stuff.* Strange to see the Eagle moored almost level with the parking lot and no slant to the ramp. Almost all of the Puget Sound is has muddy colored water and will have debris and stuff in the water for month to come.* This is not the first time, nor will it be the last time, so people know or should know what areas will flood.

*
It was raining so hard last night and this morning dish reception which very seldom happens, and gutters/drains could not keep up flooding even city streets.* Luck we are not having extremely high tides which would make the flooding worse as most river/streams are effected by the tide.*I made sure the boat was double tied so it would not float away up into the sky is was raining so hard.
 
Best of luck, Ken, and anyone else affected by this.

For those of you in other parts of the country, pretty much all of western Washington and western Oregon are being flooded. Any pics you see on the news could have been taken anywhere from Bellingham, WA south 300-400 miles to Eugene, OR. I-5 is closed for a twenty mile stretch about 70 miles north of Portland (it's under water) with no good alternate routes because all of the alternate routes are under water, too. US Hwy 101 (along the coast) is closed for a stretch just south of Seaside (about 20 miles south of the Columbia River mouth) because of high water. Amtrak has suspended service north of Portland.
 
Well it was much ado about nothing. The Puyallup river crested last night without overflowing the levy on my side. Lots of standing water but the river stayed where it belongs. I see on the news where all the roads over the passes to the east are closed for avalanche control, all the roads to the south are closed from flooding. The trains are stopped, amtrak, coast starlite, sounder commuter train all quit running.

I'm still thinking we need to follow NO's lead, and scream and whine about something and demand the government come in to save us.

Off to the boat this am to see that none of the debris is trapped in the boat house.

Ken
 
Here are some pictures, the flooded houses are a couple miles from me where the land is a little lower. The flooded road is by my house. The flag you see over the rooftop is my flag*in front of my house. The tree in the road is at my yacht club.

Ken
 

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Upside is no snakes or gators in the yard or house, small consolation though.
 
Having seen the results of FEMA , here in Fl after a number of hurricanes , I can assure you will get NOTHING.

I assume you have insurance , which DISQUALIFY'S you from getting the checks , weather you rent or own your home.

FF
 
FF wrote:

Having seen the results of FEMA , here in Fl after a number of hurricanes , I can assure you will get NOTHING.
I think before one starts throwing around stereotype assumptions and blown-out-of-proportion rumors, it's wise to talk to someone actually involved with the situation.* While he no longer seems to participate in this forum, Carey Worthen has been working as a FEMA*field office*manager to assist victims of* flooding in Ohio, then Katrina and*Rita, then the heavy flooding in Washington and Oregon last year, and has been working in Texas managing a field station for Ike victims for at least the past five or six months.* He lives in Bellingham, Washingon, but has been working the field stations for a minimum of three months at a time, usually much more.

His field station helps a LOT of people get financial assistance to rebuild their homes and put their lives back together.* So to say that FEMA does nothing is total bullsh*t.

As usual, the competence or incompetence of the agency directors and managers is what gets the media attention.* But the reality is that the effectiveness of organizations like FEMA has nothing whatsoever*to do with the people at the top.* The effectiveness is determined by people like Carey and his staff who work in the field offices day after day for months on end providing guidance and assistance to the victims themselves.

So don't throw dumba*s statements around like "FEMA will get you nothing" unless you've actually worked in a FEMA field office yourself and have some actual facts to base your statement on.
 
At the risk of starting a whole new rant that should be in "Off the Deep End", I was under the impression that FEMA was held in fairly high regard prior to the current administration proving that Gov't doesn't work.

Was I misled?
 
Curmudgeon
**** I couldn't agree with you more. FEMA was a much better organization prior to the Bush administration, and most importantly prior to affiliation with the Department of Homeland Security. The organization as a whole is on the road to improvement, having already made great advances.
**** Thanks to Marin for his understanding that one box does not fit all. Like any huge entity, there are imperfections within the system, it's people, and in the case of FEMA, the law that governs it's existance and just what it can and cannot provide to the people of this country.
**** The Stafford Act wisely limits how much help can be given an individual, and mandates that there be no duplication of benefits, such as receiving money from two different sources for the same losses. FEMA IS NOT INSURANCE. FEMA is meant to be a helping hand, and nothing more. Currently, the most anyone can receive from us is $28,800 for one disaster. There are many ways in which a persons aid from FEMA could be delayed, denied, etc.. I can tell you that without doubt that anyone who has not received help from FEMA was not entitled, for one reason or another, or did not provide information necessary to move the process forward. One way that occurs is that people don't read or don't understand letters of denial. Generally a denial letter only means that more information is needed to proceed, and people errantly accept that they've been denied totally. The most frequent failure by the disaster victim, is that they simply don't listen. In my Disaster Recovery Centers that I manage for FEMA, we see people every day that have been asked to bring* back a list of documentation to substantiate their claim, and they consistantly fail to do so. To make a blanket statement of FEMAs ineptness based on any one experience is total idiocy. Each and every case is unique, and there are many reasons for denial, including deferred maintenance, and individuals trying to pawn that off as storm damage.
I could go on and on, but will refrain. I'd just like to remind everyone that no other country I know of has an organization like FEMA that does so much for their people to aid in the recovery process. I welcome anyone who is unhappy with our system to move to Indonesia and see how much help you get with the next Sunami.
Finally, I would quote... "Blessed is the man who having nothing to say, abstains from giving us wordy evidence of the fact." George Eliot (Mary Ann Evans)
1819-1880

Carey

PS-I invite anyone who is dealing with FEMA and having difficulty with the process, to email me, and I will try to advise you as to how to proceed. I am not allowed to work your case over the phone or email beyond a little advice however.
Marin-See, I'm not gone, just trying not to offer wordy evidence that I have nothing to say.

-- Edited by Carey at 14:08, 2009-01-09
 
Some people are not happy no matter what you do. Most victims of disaster, even if they themselves are culpable for causing it, play the victim card. People who put their BBQ coals on the back porch and catch their house on fire routinely whine about how long it took the FD to get there and how much "damage" they caused while putting it out. Even though they didn't want to go back into the house while it was burning, they don't understand why I cut a hole in their roof to allow the heat out so my crews could go in.

It's the nature of the beast. Especially in our country, there is no personal responsibility. I also keep hearing about how broken FEMA was, but no one seems to acknowledge the part that LA politics, and the people themselves had in delaying their assistance during Katrina. The governors insistance on personally directing the National Guard troops. The local ordinances that would not allow the FEMA trailers to be set up in certain parish's. The resistance to evacuation even though it was offered several times before they eventually agreed to leave.

For example let's look at the outright lying of those trying to get checks and benefits who did not deserve them. Then, when caught red handed with their hands in the cookie jar, who's fault was it? Did the headline castigate the thieves? NO! The headlines placed the blame on those trying to get help to those in need as quickly as possible and of course Bush who is responsible for everything bad.

Will there ever be an organization like FEMA that will get everything right? Not in my opinion. However politics being what they are, the blame and amount of coverage you hear will vary depending on who's in office.

I appologize for not making it much plainer that I was being sarcastic about asking for FEMA aid. Several of my friends are on response teams and have been sent to the areas with a real need for them.

ken
 
Carey:* It is nice to see some hands on experience to counter the "nothing is good nonsense" that regularly appears on this subject.

A big part of this "Katrina" issue is that like Bangladesh, neither the local governments or inhabitants are willing to step out of 4th stage denial and recognize the reality and hazards of gulf coast living.

And when a big blow (inevitably) appears, it is the federal government's job to*take responsibiilty. "Dear Feds - stay out of my life - oops, dear Feds help me the wind is blowing my house away." Amazing logic!
 
Ken
No need to apologize for your statement. I did recognize your intended humor, and in fact appreciated the laugh. It was anothers rant that inspired me to comment.
There are many at fault for the Katrina era mistakes of FEMA, including local government, state government, and everyone including myself. We are all human beings doing the best we can. What I can't tolerate is the inane, continuing rants at anything not of their own creation.
The good news is that the Post Katrina Reform Act will result in an organization that serves us better than it ever has. The response to Hurricane Ike, even with it's faults is far ahead of the Katrina/Rita efforts. Much faster than any I have seen. I was flying to Texas the day after the storm. In the past it would have been two weeks later.
Thanks, Carey
 
TG
**** You got that right. Hey, as long as I have your attention, I'd like to extend an offer of a drink or two to anyone in East Texas who might be interested. I am managing a Disaster Recovery Center in Orange, TX, and have Sundays off. It would be great to meet some of you Texans, despite the stereotype I have been subjected to. I imagine you are just as friendly as all those I have met up to this point, even if you are boaters.
smile.gif
I could go as far as Galveston or Lake Charles on a Sunday. Call me at 360-815-2797. By the way, for those of you who don't know, I am from the flooded parts of Western Washington myself. Hang in there Ken. I was born in Puyallup.
****************************** Carey
 
FF
*If you have insurance that covers your losses, why would FEMA be expected to pay you again for the same loss. It's not a giveaway, but a program to help those who are uninsured or underinsured BEGIN the recovery process. If FEMA just payed you for any losses incurred, why would you buy insurance? The government is forbidden by law from interfering with the free enterprise system. When you actually understand FEMA programs and how they work, you can tell us all what's wrong with the system.
Carey
 
You guys are mixing up FEMA with the National Flood Insurance Program. FEMA provides immediate assistance after the storm, wtih various things like ice, food, supposedly temporary housing, etc. The flood insurance covers rising water, which isn't covered by your regular insurance.

I'm in the middle of this stuff after Ike, so I can tell you exactly how it's working, despite conjecture from everyone all over the rest of the country.

Friends of mine who lost their houses due to rising water are still living with me. FEMA who claims to provide temporary housing asked them how much it would be to rent a house. For a similar house that they were living in, it would be about $1600/month. FEMA said, OK, we'll give you $900. That would get them a flop maybe 50-100 miles away, with all the demand for housing after the storm.

After the appraisers came by and did the house, and all the paperwork on contents, dwelling, etc. was done, the national flood insurance folks, just say "no, it's not worth that, it's $60,000 less. Tough."

No ****. Now if you don't like it, you can tussle with them forever, sue them, whatever. They know that X% of folks will just give up and go away. X% will take the reduced settlement, since they're cash strapped and need a place to live. The final batch will actually fight them and probably win. In the meantime, they've kept everybody's cash in their pockets for as long as they can. The billboards are up everywhere now, for law firms just dying to sue. Of course, they'll be the ones to win overall.

It's a pathetic, sickening situation. All these people bought insurance thinking they were covered, and the federal flood insurance program is systematically screwing all of them, when they really need help. It's disgusting, sickening, and should be illegal. It's not due dilligence, it's harrasment. I've seen it over and over with lots of my friends in the area. Thank god I'm in a high spot and don't have to deal with this. But I can tell you it's a disgrace.

I coudl go on and on, but I'm out of gas right now. Those of you who aren't living in a hurricane or flood disaster area can speculate, but I'll give you the straight scoop. It's pathetic.

I'll add that the regular windstorm coverage seems to be working like it should, but with the storm surge all those rising water claims go to the flood insurance folks. FEMA did a great job right off the bat bringing emergency stuff here, but went to **** on the followup.

Here's the process. If you had a disaster claim for FEMA, you have to claim it with them. They automatically deny you. Then you have to apply to the SBA (small business administration) for a loan. THEN (regardless of the outcome of that) you qualify for more federal aid. For people who had their homes destroyed, the SBA (I still haven't figured out how that comes into play) MAY make you a loan, but the conditions are onerous. The friends I have who are capable are doing their own financing.

I guess the short version.. don't rely on the gummt to help you out in a disaster, even though they've been collecting those insurance premiums.
 
Keith wrote:

FEMA who claims to provide temporary housing asked them how much it would be to rent a house. For a similar house that they were living in, it would be about $1600/month. FEMA said, OK, we'll give you $900.
You know, if our house burned down or was destroyed in a flood, I would consider myself pretty damn*lucky if the government (or anyone) was willing to provide me with four walls and a roof to live in while I figured out what to do next.* I have absolutly zero, nada, zilch, no sympathy for someone who whines because they had a nice house and the equivelant rental would be $1600 a month but the government (my money) says, hey, you can rent something habitable for $900, here's the $900.

If they aren't grateful for that I say the hell with them, they can live under a frickin' blue tarp spread between a couple of trees.

I have no patience--- none--- for anyone who won't take responsibility for their own lives and isn't smart enough to anticipate what might happen if a storm comes or a river rises.* Someone wants to live by a body of water that has a reputation for rising when storms come because they want a water view?* Fine, I have no problem with that.* But don't expect any sympathy from me--- and I don't think they should get any from the government either (which is my money)--- if they don't anticipate what's gonna happen if the storm comes and*the water rises-- as it has done*for millions of years-- and they aren't prepared to deal with it.

I'm a major fan of Chuck Darwin---- if you're dumb you die.* Sounds harsh but I'm fed up with*all the people who are too stupid to get out of the way when a tree starts to blow over or too lazy to take responsibility for themselves.

And when assistance is offered, instead of being happy to get it,*people whine because their FEMA trailer doesn't come with a two-car garage and a 60-inch flatscreen with Blue Ray DVD, I say screw 'em.* They can live in a culvert with the muskrats.



-- Edited by Marin at 21:38, 2009-01-09
 
No Keith** * We are not the ones confusing the two. I know the difference. I also know that when you buy anything, including insurance, if you don't read the fine print you may ultimately suffer the consequences. You cannot buy insurance that does not have fine print to determine what is truly covered. Your average NFIP insurance is very basic, and will cover Real Property (Structure), and Personal Property (the contents of the structure). The reality is you must read the fine print. Buyer beware. There are limitations on anything, and when you make a purchase, it is your responsibility to read and understand the limitations of what you have purchased. When you buy a tomato, is there an implied right to a lifetime of tomatoes? NO! If you buy insurance for a 1967 Corvette, is there an implied right to replacement of a 1967 Corvette until the year 3067. NO! There are limitations which are the responsibility of the purchaser to read and understand. Make sure you have what you need and want. I don't know what you want, although I might know what you need. Is it my place to tell you what you want or need. NO. It is up to you to make that determination at the time of purchase. Private enterprise insurance (non-NFIP) is no different. Due to the unlimited possibilities related to what you and I might have in our homes, and what expectations we might have, it is up to us to make the determination as to what we should purchase, and not try to lay blame on someone else if we made a bad choice. It is so American (and I'm a proud American) to blame the government when our expectations are not met. Why would you or anyone else expect the government to offer insurance that gives you back 100% of what you lost if you did not pay for insurance that insures 100% of what you lost? Private enterprise recognized the opportunity to lose every dime they have with a philosophy like that, and thank goodness, so did our government. So, can we not just be happy to live in a country that gives us some help in a disaster not of the governments doing, instead of a country that would expect us to recognize the risks, be adult and take it on the chin. We are spoiled. This much I know.*
** * *I know this much. We need to be responsible for our own decisions to live where we do. We need to build in a way that best prepares for the most likely disasters. We need to be willing to purchase insurance that will cover our needs, or make up the difference out of pocket. It's called self reliance. I do not depend on you or my government for my future. I depend on me. If my government is able and willing to help me some along the way, I can only say Thank You, and I apologize for not being more prepared, and selecting a safer place to build my home. Since when is everyone else responsibile for my choices?


** * *These are just some of my opinions. If you don't like them, remember that I have many more.



** * * * * *Carey
 
Keith** * Don't try to advise people how the system works, as you really don't understand. You must apply to the SBA for an SBA (Small Business Administration) loan, if you expect to receive any help with personal property (contents of your home). If you qualify, you must accept the loan and be happy for the low interest rate. If you do not qualify, you MAY qualify for a grant up to and not to exceed ($28,800 total for Real Property, or structure, combined with Personal Property, or contents). The maximum IHP of $28,800 may be made up of any combination of "Real" or "Personal" property. It is not intended to solve all your problems, but to be a start in helping you to recover. The Federal Government cannot and should not be expected to replace everything that people lost, or people would build homes in the middle of the Pacific Ocean with no regard for the well being of the structure, knowing SAM would replace their loss. Hello!!! When are you and I going to accept responsibilty for our choices? I believe you to be a very intelligent human being, well above the average from what you have published on this site. Please help me maintain this conviction. We all accept some risk for what we own, where we build, how we live, etc.. I believe we priveleged Americans need to take responsibility for our choices and actions, and I don't say this because I work for FEMA, but because I am an American who is slightly ashamed of our belief that we are entitled to limitless protection by our government. Rejoice in the protection we do have, and help spread the idea that we all need to be responsible for ourselves. HAS ANYONE SEEN MY SOAPBOX? * *Sorry!!! * Carey
** * * * * *
 
Ken** * I went off a bit, and I hope that my rants did not in any way take away from the worry, trepidation, anquish, etc., that you are feeling at this time. I hope that all is well with you and yours.*
** * * * * * * * * Carey
 
Hey, Carey:

I'm with you.* We are survivors of earthquake, flood, landslide and fire.* Sometimes our insurance covered the problem and sometimes not.* Just had to suck it up and get on with living.* Building in areas prone to these problems has inherit risks for which we need to prepare.* If you don't buy protection you had better have a fat wallet. *
 



Carey wrote:


No Keith
** * We are not the ones confusing the two. I know the difference. I also know that when you buy anything, including insurance, if you don't read the fine print you may ultimately suffer the consequences. You cannot buy insurance that does not have fine print to determine what is truly covered. Your average NFIP insurance is very basic, and will cover Real Property (Structure), and Personal Property (the contents of the structure). The reality is you must read the fine print. Buyer beware. There are limitations on anything, and when you make a purchase, it is your responsibility to read and understand the limitations of what you have purchased. When you buy a tomato, is there an implied right to a lifetime of tomatoes? NO! If you buy insurance for a 1967 Corvette, is there an implied right to replacement of a 1967 Corvette until the year 3067. NO! There are limitations which are the responsibility of the purchaser to read and understand. Make sure you have what you need and want. I don't know what you want, although I might know what you need. Is it my place to tell you what you want or need. NO. It is up to you to make that determination at the time of purchase. Private enterprise insurance (non-NFIP) is no different. Due to the unlimited possibilities related to what you and I might have in our homes, and what expectations we might have, it is up to us to make the determination as to what we should purchase, and not try to lay blame on someone else if we made a bad choice. It is so American (and I'm a proud American) to blame the government when our expectations are not met. Why would you or anyone else expect the government to offer insurance that gives you back 100% of what you lost if you did not pay for insurance that insures 100% of what you lost? Private enterprise recognized the opportunity to lose every dime they have with a philosophy like that, and thank goodness, so did our government. So, can we not just be happy to live in a country that gives us some help in a disaster not of the governments doing, instead of a country that would expect us to recognize the risks, be adult and take it on the chin. We are spoiled. This much I know.*
** * *I know this much. We need to be responsible for our own decisions to live where we do. We need to build in a way that best prepares for the most likely disasters. We need to be willing to purchase insurance that will cover our needs, or make up the difference out of pocket. It's called self reliance. I do not depend on you or my government for my future. I depend on me. If my government is able and willing to help me some along the way, I can only say Thank You, and I apologize for not being more prepared, and selecting a safer place to build my home. Since when is everyone else responsibile for my choices?


** * *These are just some of my opinions. If you don't like them, remember that I have many more.



** * * * * *Carey
Lots of big generalities there Carey. OK, who else offeres flood insurance? Nobody that I know of. And the SPECIFICS of this particular case... they bought flood insurance to cover their dwelling value. They did read the fine print. The flood insurance folks just won't pay them the value they insured for. Now they're in for a fight. Why bother paying for that much insurance when they're never going to pay you anyway?
 
Carey wrote:

Keith
** * Don't try to advise people how the system works, as you really don't understand. You must apply to the SBA for an SBA (Small Business Administration) loan, if you expect to receive any help with personal property (contents of your home). If you qualify, you must accept the loan and be happy for the low interest rate. If you do not qualify, you MAY qualify for a grant up to and not to exceed ($28,800 total for Real Property, or structure, combined with Personal Property, or contents). The maximum IHP of $28,800 may be made up of any combination of "Real" or "Personal" property. It is not intended to solve all your problems, but to be a start in helping you to recover. The Federal Government cannot and should not be expected to replace everything that people lost, or people would build homes in the middle of the Pacific Ocean with no regard for the well being of the structure, knowing SAM would replace their loss. Hello!!! When are you and I going to accept responsibilty for our choices? I believe you to be a very intelligent human being, well above the average from what you have published on this site. Please help me maintain this conviction. We all accept some risk for what we own, where we build, how we live, etc.. I believe we priveleged Americans need to take responsibility for our choices and actions, and I don't say this because I work for FEMA, but because I am an American who is slightly ashamed of our belief that we are entitled to limitless protection by our government. Rejoice in the protection we do have, and help spread the idea that we all need to be responsible for ourselves. HAS ANYONE SEEN MY SOAPBOX? * *Sorry!!! * Carey
** * * * * *
No, I really do understand as I am sitting here with people going through the process. You have more detail (thanks) in your posting as to limits, but the fact is that you make a claim, you are rejected, then* you have to go to SBA, then go back, and back, and back...

I guess it's just standard bureaucracy, but it is maddening and stressful to everybody who's having to go through it. These are not whiners like you saw all over New Orleans during Katrina. These folks were over there as soon as they could return to their houses cleaning up the mess as best they could. They're just trying to get the money they had paid to insure their houses and contents for.
 

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Keith and all ya'all
**** I cannot deny that the NFIP is not perfect, any more than commercial insurance. You truly don't know how good your insurance is until you have to make a claim. Even a team of good lawyers would have difficulty working through the loopholes. One thing I have found is that many people don't realize that you need two NFIP policies to protect against flood. You need one for the structure, and one for personal property.
**** As to Keiths statement about NFIP being the only show in town for flood insurance, I believe that is true, with perhaps one exception. I would bet, that for a price, you can purchase flood insurance through Lloyds. Perhaps not affordably, but I know that if I lived within ten miles of any part of the Gulf or adjacent bayou and other bodies of water that I would be well elevated, and giving Lloyds a call.
**** I hope I haven't appeared to be callous towards the plight of all of you who were effected by this terrible storm. To have survived Rita with whatever damage, and then Ike, would be unimaginable for me had I not worked so many flood disasters. There is no type of storm that is more devastating than flood. The cleanup is nasty dirty stuff, the damage quite thorough, as it gets all your personal property, and the expense and time to rebuild are extensive.
Carey******************
 
Krogenguy wrote:
"If you don't buy protection you had better have a fat wallet."

To which I say...and if you do buy protection you had better still have a fat wallet...because you're going to get screwed anyway.


Carey wrote:
"You truly don't know how good your insurance is until you have to make a claim."

And I reply...because that's when you'll find out just how bad it really is and just had badly the insurance company is going to screw you.
 
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