COVID-19 has changed the way we are going to remember this Independence day weekend. Governor Newsom has announced stricter restrictions and closures ahead of the July 4th weekend, including a crackdown on mask wearing violations. Public fireworks have been cancelled in most counties.
However, it is a big holiday weekend and Americans will celebrate, here are some safety tips.
Take Precautions While Grilling
Burgers, hot dogs, fruit and pizza taste delicious when they’re grilled. Grab your favorite side dishes and follow a few precautions that ensure you and your guests grill safely.
- – Always supervise the grill when it’s in use.
- – Never grill indoors or in a fully enclosed area such as a garage or tent.
- – Use lighter fluid sparingly and never after the coals are ignited.
- – Keep children and pets away from the hot grill.
- – Remove flammable objects, including trees, from near the grill.
- – Use long-handled tools to handle food.
Use Fireworks Safely (if allowed)
Public fireworks displays are the safest way to enjoy the beautiful colors and terrific booms of this July 4th tradition, especially when you maintain a distance of at least 500 feet between you and the show. Firework displays at home can be fun though too. If you go that route, take these precautions.
- Follow the instructions on the packaging.
- Never allow children to play with the fireworks.
- Stock a fire extinguisher or water supply nearby.
- Wear eye protection when lighting fireworks.
- Remove flammable materials from the area.
- Never point fireworks toward people, animals, vehicles or structures.
- Properly dispose of duds rather than trying to relight them.
Stay Safe on the Beach (if allowed in your area)
Swimming is a fun summer activity, and it’s good exercise. At the beach, lake, public pool or backyard pool, stay safe with these tips.
- – Swim only in designated areas.
- – Obey the lifeguard and all posted signs.
- – Swim sober.
- – Get out of the water during a storm or if you hear thunder or see lightening.
- – Require children to wear life jackets.
- – Don’t dive into shallow water.
Wear Sun Bathing Protection
Picnics are part of many July 4th celebrations. You should also take these protective measures.
- – Wear sunscreen that’s at least 15 SPF.
- – Remember to apply sunscreen to your ears, hair part and the tops of your feet.
- – Avoid direct sunlight between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. when the UV rays are strongest.
- – Reapply sunscreen every two to three hours or more frequently if you’re sweating.
- – Drink plenty of water even if you’re not thirsty.
- – Wear a hat, sunglasses and long sleeves if you have to be in direct sunlight.
- – Watch for signs of heat stroke, including hot, red skin, shallow breathing and rapid, weak pulse.
Please be safe out there, follow the rules and guidelines and have fun.
Hiring young people might be tempting for a business. After all, the labor is affordable since kids don’t demand high salaries and won’t need health, retirement and vacation benefits like their older counterparts. Kids are also enthusiastic, willing to do grunt work and able to handle hard labor. Before you hire minors, though, understand the law.
Federal Child Labor Rules
Find the rules about child labor in the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). It divides minors into categories based on their age.
Children under 13 may not be employed unless the job is on a farm or in a business operated by parents or guardians.
Children who are 14 to 15 years old have several restrictions.
- During the school session, they can work a maximum of three hours per day and 18 hours per week.
- Non-school sessions can include eight hours of work per day and 40 hours per week maximum.
- They may only work from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. or until 9 p.m. from June 1 to Labor Day.
- Hour and day restrictions do not apply for kids who are employed by parents or guardians.
- They may not perform hazardous jobs, including driving motor vehicles, mining, operating certain power tool, logging, manufacturing or meat packing, packaging or slicing.
- State minimum wage guidelines apply.
Children who are 16 to 17 years old can work unlimited hours per day and days per week. Certain hazardous job limitations and state minimum wage guidelines apply.
Children over 18 are considered adults and have no restrictions on work hours or days.
Exceptions to FLSA rules do not apply to kids who work as actors, deliver newspapers or work at home with evergreen materials. Agricultural exceptions also exist.
If you decide to hire minors, make sure your paperwork is in order.
- Use an official birth certificate, driver’s license or other document to verify the minor’s age.
- Obtain an age certificate from the Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour division.
- Your state may require you or your minor employee to get a work permit available through your state’s Department of Labor.
- Get permission from the minor’s parent and school. The authorization form is available from your state’s Labor and Industry department.
- Retain employment records for at least three years. The information includes the employee’s name, address, occupation, employment dates, pay rate, hours worked and pay received.
Before you hire minors for even small tasks like filing papers or cleaning your office, check the federal laws and your state’s Department of Labor’s website. Talk to your insurance agent and attorney, too, as you make sure you’re following the law.
More people are traveling to the national parks (that are open) . It helps with social distancing, but also as the weather gets warmer people want to get outdoors. The stay at home period is over and with the measured opening, relaxing of travel and economic restrictions more Americans are hitting the road with their recreational vehicles.
Your RV is your pride and joy – whether you live in it year round or just take it out a few times a year for those on-the-road getaways. It also represents a significant investment that needs protection against damage or financial risk.
Depending on your needs, you can buy coverage on your RV either as an add-on to your standard Personal Auto insurance or as a separate Recreational Vehicle policy. Either way, since the vehicle is also a home on wheels, it faces a variety of exposures:
- Damage to the vehicle from fire or collision
- Liability for injury to third parties from an accident
- Loss of or damage to possessions inside the vehicle (for example, an expensive sound system, laptops or tablet, flat screen TV or other portable valuables). To estimate this exposure, you should take an inventory of these expensive items and list their replacement cost.
- Loss or damage to such external elements as satellite dishes or antennas (some insurers might require separate coverage “riders” on these).
Also, bear in mind that some RV policies have an annual mileage limit, which probably won’t be a concern if you only use your vehicle a few times each summer. However, if you’re on the road year round, you’ll need to consider the impact of this limitation.
If you have any questions on the amount and type of RV insurance you’ll need, feel free to get in touch with us.
What do you most appreciate about being a dad? With Father’s Day approaching on June 15, there’s no better time than today to protect your health. Learn about the top health risks men face and ways to combat these risks so that you can enjoy many more years with your children.
1. Heart Disease
The top killer of men, heart disease, stroke and peripheral vascular disease are preventable. However, you will need to address the leading causes of heart disease. Do that when you stop smoking, lower your blood pressure, reduce your bad cholesterol levels and get your diabetes under control. An exercise regimen and healthy diet also help.
2. Lung Cancer
The top cancer among men is also the most preventable. Because smoking is the cause of 90 percent of lung cancer cases, talk with your health insurance company about available cessation programs and tools that assist you in getting healthy today.
3. Prostate Cancer
The second-leading cancer in men, prostate cancer can be prevented when men undergo an annual prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test and rectal exam. These tests should begin by age 50 or sooner if this cancer runs in your family or if you eat a high-fat diet.
If diabetes isn’t controlled, you could contract vascular disease, which leads to heart attacks, amputations, blindness, kidney failure and nerve damage. Medical treatment, a balanced diet, routine exercise and an active lifestyle can help you prevent or control diabetes.
Four times as many men than women commit suicide. Men are also more likely than women to resist treatment for depression, frustration and other challenges. Asking for help is a sign of strength and can help you cope with life before you feel self-hated or a desire to commit suicide.
As a dad, focus on your health this Father’s Day. Schedule a physical exam with your primary care physician, and commit to living a healthier lifestyle. Your children will thank you.
June is the most popular month of the year for weddings, and you want your special day to be perfect. What happens, though, when things don’t go as planned? Purchase wedding liability insurance to cover your loss or hardship.
Who Does Wedding Liability Insurance Protect?
The average wedding costs $20,000. Traditionally, the bride’s parents paid for the wedding. Today, though, the couple usually foots at least a portion of the bill. Protect your investment with wedding liability insurance.
This coverage can protect you and the venue, including the rehearsal dinner location and reception hall. Whether you get married in a traditional church or synagogue, plan a destination wedding or choose a nontraditional venue like a museum, park, zoo or forest, you can be covered if accidents happen.
What Does Wedding Liability Insurance Cover?
Accidents and other unfortunate incidents can wreak havoc on your wedding day.
- A guest may trip and injure himself while walking down the aisle before the ceremony.
- Someone may get sick after eating the shrimp cocktail appetizers.
- A bridesmaid might knock over an expensive item in the reception hall as she tries to catch the bouquet.
- One of your guests may drink too much and fall while dancing.
These and other accidents could result in expensive lawsuits or medical liabilities for you and your loved ones.
Purchase liability insurance to protect yourself. The policy gives you peace of mind that even if something happens, you have financial coverage. It’s not a fun expense like your dress, cake or rings, but it is important as you start your marriage on solid financial footing.
What are Some Features of Wedding Liability Insurance?
When choosing liability coverage, look for a policy that meets your needs. There are several features you may wish to consider.
- It should cover you, your soon-to-be spouse and both sets of parents.
- The locations of your rehearsal dinner, ceremony and reception should be covered for one low price.
- It can be purchased up to the day of your wedding.
- The coverage may include liquor liability to protect you and the venue against alcohol-related accidents.
- If you purchase coverage online, a certificate of insurance is emailed to the venue.
- You may receive a discount if you also purchase wedding cancellation insurance.
- The limit options should be flexible to meet your needs and budget.
Your agent can discuss all these details with you as you choose the features that you want.
How do you get Wedding Liability Insurance?
We can provide you with this valuable coverage. Get in touch today about how to get a wedding liability insurance policy that protects you on your special day.
A nationwide study by the Washington National Institute for Wellness Solutions (IWS) found that only 10% of middle-class workers believe that they have enough savings to cover medical emergencies and the long-term cost of a critical illness.
Diseases such as cancer, heart disease, or Alzheimer’s can be life-changing financially, as well as personally. Although most respondents said that, even with Medical and Disability Income insurance, they would need out-of-pocket funds to cover their expenses from a serious medical condition, they lack the savings to fall back on. Nearly half (45%) felt they would never recover financially from a battle with Alzheimer’s or dementia; for cancer, the percentage is 38%.
Out of 1,001 survey participants between the ages of 30 and 66 and annual household incomes of $35,000 to $99,999, 75% have saved less than $20,000. Among these, half have less than $2,000 in savings – and one in four have no current savings.
One-fourth of respondents “did not know” what resources they would use to help offset their expenses, says IWS. Others would use credit cards (28%), loans from friends and family (23%) or financial institutions (19%) to help cover what insurance doesn’t.
Washington National Insurance Co president Barbara Stewart advises employees to give themselves a reality check about the financial burden of critical illness. “Find out what your current insurance will – and will not – cover” says Stewart, “and then assess your overall financial health. Identify the gaps between the resources you would need and the options you have.”
We recommend that you offer your employees Critical Illness coverage as a voluntary benefit that will provide an extra layer of financial protection when they face the challenge of a serious disease. Give us a call.