What do you think of when you hear the word, “Halloween?”
As a parent my first thought goes to child safety. Protecting children from predators, reviewing treats for anything harmful and anticipating the high amount of sugar our children will consume – are real and valid concerns. My biggest fear is always how we can keep children and parents safe as they go from house to house at dusk or even in the dark. Fortunately, there are some simple steps we can take to keep everyone safe during this family fun holiday.
- Know the trick or treating dates and times in your community. Due to school schedules, many communities observe trick or treating on the weekends.
- Drive with your lights on – even if it is not yet dark.
- Don’t be distracted by using your phone or other devices.
- Drive below the posted speed limits, especially in residential neighborhoods.
- Watch out for pedestrians walking on or crossing the streets.
- Watch for children as they’ll often dart between parked cars. This is an exciting time and, in their enthusiasm, they may forget to look both ways.
- Look out for children wearing dark costumes, especially at night.
- Use extra caution when making turns into driveways and neighborhoods.
- Every child under age 12 should be accompanied by an adult.
- Develop a planned trick-or-treating route with your children ahead of time.
- Educate and remind your children about pedestrian safety.
- Use sidewalks instead of roads, and crosswalks rather than running across the street. Walk, don’t run, especially from between parked cars.
- Instruct children to be aware of vehicles while crossing the street -- and always look both ways.
- Wear light-colored clothing so you’re more visible. Clothing should be short enough that it will not pose a tripping hazard.
- Carry a flashlight.
- Make sure masks don’t obstruct your child’s vision. Consider using makeup instead of masks.
Halloween is an exciting time of year for both children and parents. From minions to motorists, safety is everyone’s responsibility.
Lee/O’Keefe Insurance Agency
2501 Chatham Road
Springfield, IL 62704
217-528-5679 ext. 111
The Protection Your Business Needs
By Carl Weitzel
Owning a business is a huge financial investment. Starting, developing, and expanding a business requires the acquisition of property that includes office space or buildings, computers, furniture, equipment, and inventory. For many businesses, such as manufacturing plants and distributors with sprawling warehouses, this can equate to millions of dollars in equipment alone. The loss of these items would be a major blow to any sized business and, in many cases, could lead to closure without the protective coverage of property insurance.
Commercial property insurance safeguards your business from events such as fire theft, vandalism, or windstorms (review your coverage or speak with us today to find out what is covered under your policy) and the insurance premium can typically be expensed. Beyond being a good hedge against loss for the business owner, most mortgage and business loan lenders require proof of commercial property insurance that protects their investment as well. Further, policies can be written to include business interruption insurance, which covers lost revenue – and more – in the event, a covered event halts business operations.
Identity Theft – Online Christmas Shopping
By Carl Weitzel
The last of the Halloween candy is dwindling, the “free turkey with purchase” ads are in full swing, and retailers have their holiday decorations ablaze. Perhaps you have started your Christmas shopping. Maybe you are one of those devoted go-getters already putting the finishing touches on your list or, maybe you enjoy the crush of the last-minute binge.
Whatever your style, The National Retail Federation knows this – almost half of all holiday shopping will be done online (NRF, October 20, 2015). Although I’m a devoted local shopper, sometimes that one unique item can only be found at www.icantfinditanywhereelse.com Let’s face it, browsing and buying on the web can save you time and money. Unfortunately, this convenience comes with vulnerabilities, namely, personal information security. When searching for that perfect deal, you may be tempted to visit some not-so-professional looking sites or might fall victim to a mass security breach.
By Leslie Caveny
Dangerous driving comes in many forms, which can be easily avoided. At this time of year, when the roads are affected by snow and/or frost, it’s even more imperative to act responsibly when driving – not just for the safety of you and your passengers, but also the safety of fellow motorists.
Here are some of the most concerning behaviors adopted by drivers, which are easy to avoid. According to the National Safety Council, texting while driving accounts for 330,000 accidents annually in the US – equivalent to 25% of all road incidents.
Insure Your Christmas Gifts
By Quinn Allen
Christmas tends to be a time for spending and big purchases for the ones that we love. Unfortunately, this often means we are at higher risk of property theft during the Holidays. It’s important that you make the time to speak with your insurance agent to ensure that these new gifts are covered under your policy. Depending on the item, you could schedule or you could increase your coverage by making changes to even a homeowner or car insurance policy – if the purchased item is a home or car. Examples of items to schedule are:
- Computers, laptops, or tablets
- Hobby Equipment (ski, scuba, quad copters, RC airplanes, etc.)
- Musical instruments
- Designer clothing
- Gaming systems (PS4, Xbox One, Wii U, etc.)
- Fine art (prints, paintings, sculptures, vases, etc.)
- Mobile Devices