The Workers’ Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau of California released its 2022 WCIRB Geo Study, which underscores regional differences in claim characteristics across California.
Edgardo Cabrales Sr., 61, and his son, Edgar Cabrales Jr., 36, both of San Jose, California, were charged with five felony counts each of insurance fraud after a California Department of Insurance investigation found they allegedly underreported $12 million in employee wages and payroll to save on workers’ compensation insurance premiums.
The Cabrales own two commercial cleaning companies in San Jose: Pine Building Maintenance and Network Facility Management.
More than a half of all reported COVID-19 indemnity claims in California continue to arise from workers in the healthcare sector, according to a new report from the Workers’ Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau.
The WCIRB released the information this week in a report, “COVID-19 in California Workers’ Compensation – 2022 Update.”
This report details the characteristics of COVID-19 workers’ comp claims in California and their impact on the state’s workers’ comp system.
An investigation by the California Department of Insurance resulted in the arrest last week of Rene Carlos Aguero, 71, and Gustavo Adolfo Lopez, 56, for allegedly submitting fraudulent vocational training vouchers for workers’ compensation claims and failing to provide the training at the for-profit school they run, Computer Institute of Technology.
Many of the injured workers were Spanish speakers who were asked to sign documents in English, which they did not understand, according to investigators.
Aguero and Lopez were charged with 18 felony counts, including conspiracy, insurance fraud, grand theft and forgery. The CDI estimates the fraudulent insurance claims to reach $1.7 million.
Federal officials have initiated a criminal investigation into PG&E Corp.’s potential role in starting California’s largest wildfire of the year.
On Sept. 24, the US Forest Service removed one of the utility’s transmission poles from the site in Placer County where the Mosquito fire started, PG&E said Monday in a filing. USFS didn’t immediately respond to inquiries about the probe.
Thousands of residents were under evacuation and shelter-in-place orders early Tuesday after heavy rains unleashed mudslides in a mountain area east of Los Angeles that burned two years ago, sending boulders and other debris across roads.
Firefighters went street by street in the community of Forest Falls Monday night to make sure no residents were trapped. Eric Sherwin, spokesperson for the San Bernardino County Fire Department, said crews hadn’t found anyone who needed to be rescued and no one was reported missing. Crews would canvas the neighborhoods again and begin cleanup efforts after sunrise, he said.
Californians stepped up their water conservation in July, using 10.4% less than two years ago as the state struggles with a years-long drought, state water officials said.
July marks the first full month that new conservation rules like a ban on watering decorative grass were in effect, which state water officials said helped make a difference. Water use started to trend down in June after a bump in April and May.
Still, conservation over the past year is still far below the 15% drop Gov. Gavin Newsom requested in summer 2021 as the state fought to maintain critical water supplies in anticipation of a drier year ahead. Statewide, water use is down since then by just 3.4% compared with 2020, the year Newsom is measuring against.
A wood products company said that it is investigating whether a fire that killed two people as it swept through a Northern California town was caused by the possible failure of a water-spraying machine used to cool ash at its veneer mill.
Roseburg Forest Products Co. also announced that although the investigation was not complete, it was planning to provide up to $50 million for a community restoration fund.
The Mill Fire erupted Sept. 2 at the company’s facility in the small town of Weed on Interstate 5, about 280 miles northeast of San Francisco.
California is facing a prolonged late-summer heat wave this week, with widespread triple-digit temperatures starting in the south and spreading northward, the National Weather Service said Monday.
Excessive heat watches will go into effect Wednesday morning and remain in effect through Sunday evening in a large swath of Southern California, including much of the normally temperate coastline, forecasters said.
Temperatures were predicted to top 100 degrees (37.7 Celsius) in many valley and mountain locations.
“This heat may be record breaking and will likely produce a very high heat illness risk,” the Los Angeles-area weather office wrote.
The main highway from Los Angeles to Phoenix was damaged by a flash flood that washed out part of the road through the Southern California desert in the latest bout of punishing monsoonal thunderstorms that have hit the region this summer.
The newest round of flooding started Wednesday evening, damaging a roadway that was part of a detour past a repair project along eastbound Interstate 10 near the small community of Desert Center, about 165 miles east of Los Angeles.
Traffic in both directions was halted initially, but westbound lanes for motorists heading from Arizona to California reopened later.