Northwest Poll
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Take a Northwest poll to see how you rate

Are you a fair-weather frolicker, or do you play rain or shine?

Skier

According to the 2014 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 63% of Northwest residents say they play outdoors at least twice a week. Yet 20% often decide against it if the weather is wet, and 51% sometimes say “never mind.” Dayhiking is our most popular activity. How about you?

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Do you see many distracted pedestrians? And are you one?

Pedestrians on phones

According to the 2014 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 88% of Northwest drivers say they see pedestrians distracted by cell phones and such, but 67% say they rarely or never are themselves. Instead, they say they talk with other pedestrians. How about you?

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Back when you attended your high school prom, did you drink?

Prom night

According to the 2014 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 19% of Northwest drivers say they drank on the night of their high school prom, and 34% say they attended a party where alcohol was served. Also, 79% drove themselves or rode with peers. How about you? 

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What would you change if tolls are collected on both I-90 and 520?

I-90 Bridge

According to the 2014 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 37% of Seattle-area say they'll drive around Lake Washington, and 25% say they'll ride the bus or carpool more often. Yet 28% say they won't change anything. How about you? 

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Do you text and use a cell phone while driving, despite the law?

Woman texting while driving

According to the 2014 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 11% of NW drivers admit they text behind the wheel, and 14% use a hand-held phone, even though both are illegal. Also, 29% of drivers admit they text while stopped at a red light, which is illegal. How about you? 

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Drivers, how often do you see aggressive behavior on the road?

Polite drivers

According to the 2014 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 59% of NW drivers deny they drive aggressively, but 37% say they see others do it 10+ times per month. And 86% say they ‘always’ use turn signals, but see only 4% of other drivers do the same. How about you?  

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Are you comfortable driving in snow and ice?

Putting chains on tires

According to the 2013 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 54% of NW drivers say they’re comfortable driving in snow and ice, and 64% of E. Washington drivers answer that way. Yet only 41% in the NW carry chains, and 53% have never installed them. How about you?  

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Do you light your home with old-style or LED outdoor holiday lights?

Old-style holiday lights

According to the 2013 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 50% of NW residents display outdoor holiday lights. 51% in Washington use LEDs, while 43% do likewise in Portland. More Portlanders burn old-style C-7 and C-9 bulbs, 36% vs. 23%. How about you?  

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Do you think service and therapy dogs belong in stores and restaurants?

Woman in wheelchair with service dog

According to the 2013 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 89% of Northwest residents think trained service dogs belong in stores and restaurants, far fewer favor therapy dogs, and 8% say no dogs. Period. Also, 42% prefer to own a dog over a cat (28%). How about you?  

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Was your first car older, and short on safety equipment?

Classic Ford Mustang

According to the 2013 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 29% of NW drivers’ first cars were 10 years old or more, 19% were 6 to 9 years old, and only 13% had driver’s side airbags. Fords and Chevies are giving way to Toyotas and Hondas. How about yours?  

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Do you still keep and use a landline phone at home?

woman talking on phone

According to the 2013 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 64% of NW residents say ‘yes,’ with 37% wanting it for emergencies in a power outage. And 38% of people communicate via cell phones with people while inside the same house. How about you?  

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Do you celebrate July 4 by lighting or watching fireworks?

happy children with fireworks

According to the 2013 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, about one-third of Washington and Portland-area residents light their own, but 14% don’t know their local fireworks restrictions, and 15% admit they disobey them. How about you?  

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Drivers, do you leave a note if you hit a parked car?

damaged car bumper

According to the 2013 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 53% of Portland drivers always do so, compared with 67% of Washington drivers. Also, men have more accidents than women, regardless of fault. Surprised, or not surprised?  

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Drivers, do you offer excuses when pulled over by police?

woman in car talking to police officer

According to the 2013 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 47% of NW drivers rarely or never get a ticket when pulled over, and 48% rarely or never try to talk their way out of a ticket. Only 11% say they always get a ticket. How about you?  

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Parents, how well have you child-proofed your home?

toddler girl climbing stairs

According to the 2013 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, about 83% safeguard their homes for electrical shock and harmful chemicals, while far less strap bookcases to walls, install staircase gates, or use toilet-seat locks. How about you?  

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Do you drive while you're distracted?

man eating while driving car

According to the 2013 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 67% of Northwest drivers say “rarely” or “never.” But of those who do, one-third are under age 35, and nearly 25% of them don’t think it’s dangerous to drive distracted. How about you?  

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Do you idle your car unattended, or drive with an icy windshield?

woman scraping ice from car windshield

According to the 2012 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 63% of Northwest drivers choose heaters over scrapers to clear their windshields, and only 41% obey the law by always waiting until the glass is entirely clear before driving off. How about you?  

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Do you believe it’s possible that Sasquatch exists?

wooden sasquatch carving

According to the 2012 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 33% of Northwest residents say Sasquatch might exist, and 12% say they or a friend has actually seen one. Washingtonians welcome the notion more than Portlanders. How about you?  

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Will the I-5 Columbia River toll change your driving habits?

Interstate-5 Columbia River highway sign at Oregon border

According to the 2012 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 65% of Clark County commuters drivers will find other routes to avoid I-5 tolls, while 41% of Portlanders will stay the course, and many will take untolled I-205 instead. How about you?  

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Do men, and red cars, cost more to insure?

man driving red car

According to the 2012 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 36% of drivers think red cars cost more to insure than cars of another color. 55% think males cost more to insure than females. And 31% don’t know creosote is dangerous. How about you?  

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Have SR 520 bridge tolls changed your driving patterns?

SR 520 tolling highway sign

According to the 2012 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 46% in the Seattle area drive no differently, even though 62% said in 2010 they’d avoid the bridge. But 32% now use I-90 more often to avoid 520 tolls. How about you?  

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Are you a polite driver? How about the other guy?

angry man shaking fist out car window

According to the 2012 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 61% of Northwest drivers say they haven’t behaved aggressively behind the wheel, but 96% say others do so, up to 20+ times per month. How about you?  

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Do you know and help protect your neighbors?

neighborhood watch sign on street

According to the 2012 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 41% of Northwest residents know fewer than one-quarter of their neighbors, and 87% have never participated in Night Out Against Crime. How about you?  

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Do you prefer to pump your own gasoline?

fuel pump nozzle

According to the 2012 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 63% of Oregon drivers support their self-service ban, while 60% of Washington drivers – male and female – support pumping their own gas. How about you?  

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Young residents often ill-prepared for household emergencies

man using wrench to turn off water to house

According to the 2012 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, only 47% of Northwest residents under 35 know where to turn off their home-gas line; 50% can point to their water shut-off valve. Older residents fare better. How about you?  

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Northwest drivers getting familiar with bicycle boxes at intersections

bicycle box painted on street

According to the 2012 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 72% of drivers in Portland and 53% in Washington know it's illegal to stop in green "bike boxes." Despite the boxes limiting right-hand turns, 55% favor them. How about you?  

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ID theft concerns Northwest residents

woman shredding sensitive documents

According to the 2012 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, more than 80% of residents are concerned about ID theft, but most take steps to protect themselves. Less than 20% subscribe to a theft-protection service. How about you?  

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Oregon parents strict on teen drivers

teen boys riding in car

52% want “primary offense” for violators

According to the 2012 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, many Portland-area parents go beyond the minimum requirements of the provisional-license law, limiting miles, music, passengers, etc. How about you?  

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Are hybrid vehicles a Northwest rarity?

hybrid vehicle and wind turbines

Survey hints, perhaps we’re not so ‘green’ after all

According to the 2012 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, fewer than 2% of Northwest drivers own a hybrid vehicle, though more than half would consider buying one the next time they shop for a car. How about you?  

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If a neighbor’s tree falls on your house, whose insurance covers it?

house damaged by fallen tree

Most get it wrong: it’s your own insurer, most often

According to the 2011 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 60% of people incorrectly believe that if it was the neighbor’s tree that fell, the neighbor’s insurance covers the damage. But in most cases, your own insurer pays. 

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Do you use a hand-held phone while driving?

woman using mobile phone while driving car

“Yes,” say 31% of Portland-area drivers

According to the 2011 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 26% of those drivers also admit they text while driving. One-third of all Portland drivers think phone offenses warrant more than the existing $142 fine. Do you agree?

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Do police allow a speeding “buffer zone?”

Speed limit 65 highway sign

“Yes” say NW drivers, and 43% say it’s 5 to 9 mph

According to the 2011 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 59% of Washington and Oregon drivers believe police allow them to speed on freeways, with most (50%) saying you’re allowed up to 4 mph over the limit. What do you think?

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Do you put your kids in the back seat?

child in car safety seat

Drivers know that's safest, but just 43% see it in practice

According to the 2011 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 80% of Washington drivers know that NHTSA says young kids should ride in the back seat, but they think less than half of drivers do that regularly. What’s been your experience?

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Do you conserve fuel when driving?

car with money in gas tank

Poll shows saving money, not ‘green,’ motivates most

According to the 2011 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 83% of Northwest drivers conserve fuel on the road because they want to save money, not to lessen pollution, and 91% make an effort to improve their mileage. How about you?

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Do you “keep left except to pass”?

car approaching another on highway

Poll: Many are unaware left-lane camping is illegal

According to the 2011 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 43% of Washington drivers don’t know that driving in the left lane and impeding traffic is more than just annoying to other drivers – it can earn you a ticket. Are you a left lane camper?

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Do you burn recreational fires at home or in parks?

man burning outdoor fire in pit

Poll shows many think they’re illegal during burn bans

According to the 2011 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 80% of residents think burn bans include recreational fires, but that’s not always true. And 10% of people light recreational fires 10 times or more per year. How about you?

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Do you think it’s possible Sasquatch exists?

blurry photo of sasquatch

Poll shows 38% of Washington residents say ‘yes’

According to the 2011 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 13% of residents also say they’ve actually seen Sasquatch. And 55% believe in unexplained UFOs, with one-third saying they’ve seen one. How about you?

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Do you shred sensitive documents and unwanted mail?

young man holding paper shreds

Poll shows 81% of Washington residents say ‘yes’

According to the 2011 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 84% of people have installed security software on their computer. But people under age 35 take fewer steps to protect against identity theft in general. How about you?

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Do you conserve water around the home?

globe illustration dripping from giant faucet

Poll shows 83% of Washington residents say ‘yes’

According to the 2011 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, residents age 55+ make the greatest efforts to conserve water, recycle motor oil, and avoid phosphates, while those under age 35 do less. How about you?

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Do you use freeway HOV lanes illegally?

freeway with HOV lane

Poll shows 27% of Puget Sound-area drivers say ‘yes’; speed harmonization sometimes ignored.

According to the 2011 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, only 22% of drivers comply with variable speed limits right away, and 22% say you can’t be ticketed for not complying. How about you?

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Are you comfortable driving in the snow?

car driving in heavy snow

Poll shows 58% of Washington drivers say ‘yes’ whether they live east or west of the Cascades.

According to the 2011 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 58% of drivers also say they’re safer than most others with their snow-driving ability, though less than half have ever installed chains on their own car. How well do you drive in snow?

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Are you a jaywalker?

people crossing rainy street

Poll shows nearly one-third of Washington drivers admit they cross streets illegally as pedestrians.

According to the 2011 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 31% of drivers admit they cross the street outside of crosswalks or against the signal. For those under age 35, it’s 43%. Are you a jaywalker? And are the fines fair?

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How polite are Washington drivers?

woman pressing car horn

Poll shows that compared with a year ago,
drivers are more aggressive, less polite.

According to the 2010 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, there’s a 6-point increase in aggressive driving since 2009, especially among women. Yet drivers still think their own driving is more polite than others’. What do you think?

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Do you want red-light cameras in your community?

photo enforecement notice

Do you believe they change driving behavior?
Poll shows mixed sentiment for adding more cameras.

According to the 2010 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll,
64% of drivers think cameras are effective in decreasing
violations, while 29% want no more cameras installed. Many wrongly believe these red-light tickets go on their records. What do you think?

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Do you agree with the fine for texting while driving?

driver texting in car

Do you think the $124 fine is fair, too low, or too high? Poll shows most Washington drivers support the law.

According to the 2010 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll,
83% of drivers support the anti-texting fine, and in fact,
about 40% said the $124 fine should be higher, while 30%
support a higher cell-phone fine. What do you think?

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Do you know the traffic laws for sharing roads with bicyclists?

two bicyclists on road

And do you yield enough room? Poll shows uncertainty among Washington drivers.

According to the 2010 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, some laws affecting cyclists are less intuitive than others, but overall, 45% say the laws are fair. What do you think?

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Will the SR 520 toll change your driving habits?

520 bridge from Seattle, Washington

Poll shows many Seattle-area drivers will choose other routes, carpool, or ride the bus

According to the 2010 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, drivers are now more than twice as likely to use public transportation than two years ago. How about you?

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Parents, do you enforce the intermediate license law?

teenage boy driving car

Poll shows Washington drivers want stronger enforcement for teens who violate the law

According to the 2010 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, most drivers want intermediate-license violations to be a primary offense, rather than secondary. How about you?

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Do you use your cell phone while driving?

person using cell phone while driving

Poll shows Washington drivers are phoning and texting more, despite state laws against it

According to the 2010 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, more drivers in our state are using hand-held phones to talk and text than 20 months ago. How about you?

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What’s your blood-alcohol limit?

keys and alcoholic drink on table

Poll shows Washington drivers know their limits for how much they can drink and still drive safely

According to the 20010 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, motorists in our state know how many alcoholic drinks they can consume before it’s unsafe for them to drive. How about you?

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What prevents costly car repairs?

oil going into engine

Poll shows Washingtonian drivers see a link between clean oil and engine life

According to the 2009 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, people believe changing the oil and filter on their cars will prevent breakdowns more than anything else. Do you agree?

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What causes the most home claims?

firefighter battling home fire

Poll shows Washingtonians don’t know the true answer, one that might surprise you

According to the 2009 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, people believe most home-related claims are caused by catastrophic events beyond their control. How about you?

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How polite are Washington drivers?

smiling man in car drivers seat

Poll shows Washington drivers believe they’re more polite, less rude than "the other guy"

According to the 2009 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, women consider themselves to be more-polite drivers than do men, and everyone thinks that other drivers are far more rude or erratic than themselves. How about you?

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Do you text-message while driving?

young woman using cell phone in car

Poll shows most Washington drivers admit to reading, sending messages behind the wheel

According to the 2009 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, of those drivers who use electronic devices, 18% admit to texting while driving, up from 6% in 2008. Yet more and more people are concerned with texting. How about you?

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Would you bring your own shopping bags?

paper and canvas grocery bags with vegetables

Poll shows most Seattleites oppose paying a tax for using paper or plastic grocery bags.

According to the 2009 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 71% of Seattle-area residents oppose paying a 20¢ bag tax and 54% opose even a 5¢ bag tax. But 88% likely would bring their own bags if the tax law passes. How about you?

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Do you know 4-way-stop traffic laws?

four-way stop sign

Poll shows older Washington drivers are more savvy to urban driving laws.

According to the 2009 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 96% of drivers age 55 and older correctly understand who has the right-of-way at intersections, compared with only 84% of drivers 35 and younger. How about you?

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Are you an uninsured renter?

for rent sign

Poll shows most renters have no insurance to protect their personal possessions.

According to the 2009 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 58% of renters in Washington have no coverage for things like furniture, appliances, clothing, and electronics. And few have ever inventoried their stuff. How about you?

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What would you do differently if 520 is tolled?

cars drive on highway 520 near Seattle, Washington

Poll shows most people would drive other routes rather than carpool, ride the bus, or telecommute

According to the 2009 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 47% of Seattle-area drivers would simply take I-90, one-fourth would drive north around the lake, and just one in 10 would carpool more often. How about you?

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Do you like the new cell phone law?

woman looking at phone while driving car

Poll shows fewer Washington drivers
 now support a “primary offense” law

According to the 2008 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 50% of drivers (down from 60% earlier) think hand-held cell-phone users should be ticketed without having committed a more-serious offense. How about you?

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Do you feel safe in your neighborhood?

stack of paper mail items

Poll shows that despite safety concerns,
few people have joined a block watch

According to the 2008 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 57% of Washingtonians worry about neighborhood safety, but only 8% have joined a block watch, and 89% haven’t joined a Night Out event. How about you?

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Are you vulnerable to identity theft?

police office giving ticket to man in car

Poll shows 79% of Washington residents shred their sensitive documents

According to the 2008 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 50% of Washingtonians are “extremely” or “very concerned” about having their identities stolen. Yet just 31% have installed locking mailboxes. How about you?

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Does cell phone law fall short?

police office writing ticket for man in car

Poll shows 60% of Washington drivers support a “primary offense” citation

According to the 2008 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 60% of Washingtonians think the new July 1 law banning cell phones while driving doesn’t go far enough. Even more oppose text messaging. How about you?

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Do you shred unwanted mail?

pile of shredded paper

Poll shows 16% of Washingtonians shred none or almost none of it

According to the 2007 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, only 25% of Washington residents shred all of their unwanted mail. Also, 25% have never requested a copy of their credit report. How about you?

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Do you speed while driving?

speed limit 55 highway sign

Poll shows 46% of Washington drivers exceed the speed limit often or sometimes

According to the 2007 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, nearly half of Washingtonians speed while driving. But they do so less frequently now than two years ago. And many speed simply to keep up with traffic. How about you?

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Should hand-held cell phones be banned?

woman in car talking on cellphone

Poll shows 85% of Washington residents want restrictions on cell use while driving

According to the 2007 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, two-thirds of Washingtonians believe talking on a cell phone while driving should be a primary offense, meaning drivers could be ticketed even if they’re not violating any other laws.

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Do you hire casual laborers?

man on ladder painting house

Poll shows many Washington homeowners take chances with unlicensed, unbonded workers

According to the 2006 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, of those Washington homeowners who hire third parties for home repairs, one in 10 put themselves at risk by hiring casual laborers. Do-it-yourself homeowners need to be more discerning, too.

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Renters, are you vulnerable?

apartment for rent sign

Poll shows most renters aren't insured; many misunderstand renter's insurance

According to the 2006 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, more than half of Washington renters have no home insurance. One-third mistakenly believe it's too expensive, while many others don’t know renter’s insurance can cover belongings in their car.

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Do you need rental car insurance?

row of rental cars

Poll shows some people buy insurance they might not need

According to the 2006 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, almost half of Washington drivers have rented a car in the past three years, and 20% of those bought insurance that potentially could be duplicate coverage.

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Do hybrid cars save you money?

hybrid car

Poll shows expectations might not be realized soon

According to the 2006 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 38% of licensed Washington drivers who plan to buy a new vehicle are likely to buy a hybrid car. Of those, nearly half would do so to get better gas mileage and because "it would cost less."

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Is your home holiday-safe?

tangled holiday lights

Leaving lights on and burning candles puts Washington homeowners at risk

According to the 2005 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 20% of homeowners sometimes or always leave their indoor holiday lights on when they leave the home. Also, nine out of 10 homeowners use indoor holiday lights.

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How fire-safe is your home?

woman reading book near fire

Many Washington homeowners fall short on fire safety

According to the 2005 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, 55% of homeowners store their fire extinguishers in a risky location. Also, only 24% of homeowners who use a fireplace clean their chimneys each year.

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Do you check hoses and water lines?

home exterior

Poll shows many Washingtonians fail to do simple home maintenance

According to the 2005 PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, four out of 10 homeowners fail to perform simple maintenance, often resulting in costly water-damage claims. Broken washing-machine hoses and other water lines are the No. 1 cause of PEMCO homeowner claims.

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Do you speed to go with the flow?

speeding car

Poll reveals why drivers feel the need to speed

According to PEMCO Insurance’s 2005 Northwest Insurance Poll, 51% of Washington drivers speed often or sometimes. Of those, 9 out of 10 say they do so to keep up with the flow of traffic, or it’s because they don’t pay much attention to posted speed limits and find themselves going too fast.

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Cell phone usage and driving

woman using cell phone while driving

Majority of Washington drivers want changes in cell phone laws

According to PEMCO Insurance’s 2005 Northwest Insurance Poll, four out of five Washington drivers believe that talking on cell phones while driving should be legal only with hands-free devices, or made illegal altogether.

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Do you enforce teen-driving restrictions?

mother and teen daughter in car

Parents and teens have a lot to learn before getting behind the wheel

According to a recent survey commissioned by PEMCO Insurance, nearly one-quarter of Washington state residents are unaware of the Intermediate Driver's License law, commonly called graduated licensing. And although parents of teen drivers have much greater awareness of the law, 16% of them don't enforce it.

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