5 Tips on Avoiding Wind-Related Losses to Your Home or Car

June 9, 2011

Best-Preventative Measures in Avoiding Wind-Related Losses:

  • Collect the necessities before the storm hits: water, food, flashlights, batteries, radio in case of power loss. Stay away from windows. You know the basics.
  • Bring outdoor objects inside so they don’t fly away. Close the patio umbrella so it is less likely to get damaged, and then, damage other things on your property.
  • Stay inside; it’s not a good time to be sunning yourself or having a BBQ.
  • Make sure any trees or tree branches in the proximity to your car or home are secured or removed all together. (Don’t do this during the storm!)
  • Garage your vehicles if you have a garage. And secure or reinforce the door shut. (Some people fill their garage with too much junk so you can’t even fit a car in it. Don’t be one of them!)

Preaching Prom Safety

May 6, 2011

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It’s that time of year again, folks. PROM SEASON for most of the schools in the area. NBA Insurance wants to take this time to provide some driving-safety tips for you to share with your sons and daughters who may be attending prom in the coming weeks.

  • Make sure your teen has a safe ride home from the party whether it is another student (a designated driver) or a trusted adult. If your son or daughter needs a ride home really late at night, make yourself available for him or her.
  • Some schools have started to put on alcohol-free events held immediately after prom using money raised from donations, grants and contributions from local businesses. Activities are left up to the senior class’ student government. It’s really just a good way for kids to dodge the crazy-party scene.
  • Don’t get your sons and daughters a hotel room. It’s really a way of enabling them to drink and make potentially disastrous decisions.
  • Don’t buy alcohol for your kids. It sounds like an obvious tip but it is something parents often overlook as being OK as long as they are present. 46 percent of teens nationwide say that by age 17, they’ve been to a party with alcohol and/or drugs where parents were present.
  • Give a reasonable curfew to your teen if they plan to go to an after-party.
  • Speak candidly and openly with your son or daughter about the risks associated with alcohol consumption (ie. binge drinking, the consequences of being caught drinking under-age, drunk-driving risks).
  • Know your son or daughters’ friends in case you need to reach him or her and are unable to.
For more visit this link and this one too.  🙂

The Dangers of Melting Snow: Farewell, Frosty

December 29, 2010

Melting snow is more of a danger than you may realize. And not just that it destroys the snowman your kids just built. Admittedly, it is really sad to see Frosty reduced to a puddle of water mixed with a carrot, a hat and some eyes made out of coal.

I’m talking about what snow melt can cause…

  • Falling ice. The solution to saving your windshield is to not drive near power lines or trees. Since that is unavoidable, just be aware of it. If you are walking, the best way to protect yourself is by wearing a hat, sunglasses and a thick coat. Or not walking.
  • Street flooding. Don’t speed through puddles. That’s your ticket to hydroplane city. And that’s a place no one wants to visit.
  • Black ice (if the melted pools re-freeze). Black ice is scary because it’s either really hard to see or totally impossible to see. Especially when driving at night. If you know it to be a danger, you should just drive cautiously: slower, not swervey.
  • Seepage into the basement if the snow hugs the periphery of your house. Moving the snow just 3 to 5 feet from the house will reduce problems.
  • Watch that sump pump! Test it by pouring water into the pit. “Make sure the discharge hose carries the water several feet away from the house to an area that drains well. Make sure the sump pump discharge hose is on sloped ground so it drains to prevent it from freezing.” (I take this tip and the one before it from NDSU — North Dakota State University).
  • The same source also advises to shovel your yard. But that would take forever. Their point is that it causes “wet soil” (aka- lots of mud). So, since you are probably not Superman, just be aware that that can make your yard really slippery as well. And if you fell, you would not be a happy camper.
  • About your roof, according to the NDSU, “about 2,500 gallons of water will come from a 1,000-square-foot roof with snow 1 foot deep across the roof. This much water may cause seepage problems if allowed to drain next to the house. Hellevang recommends homeowners make sure their eave trough or gutter downspouts carry the water several feet from the house to a well-drained area.”
  • Ice dams: “The warmth from your house melts the snow on the top of your roof… As this melted snow runs down the roof,…it then reaches the roof edge which is at sub zero temperature…this drop in temperature causes the snowmelt to refreeze creating the dams that you often see on people’s houses in winter. The weight of these dams can cause a problem itself…When further snowmelt collects in pools against the dams,…this water eventually runs through the roof and into the house.” (Source: eZine Articles)

So print this out and, though unfortunate, you probably have a whole list of things to do this weekend.

(Source of Photo)

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Tips for Halloween Safety #insurance #halloween

October 29, 2010

Halloween Safety


1. Check http://www.familywatchdog.us/ for any local sex offenders. You don’t want to be trick-or-treating at their houses.

2. Accompany your children when trick-or-treating. If you can’t go, then send another parent. If no one goes, then you should know their route and ask that they check in with you every hour or so. Make sure it is a safe area.

3. If you child’s costume involves a mask, make sure they still have peripheral vision. They need to be aware of their surroundings.

4. If you have older kids or teens going to a party, you should at least know where it is being held in case of emergency or if they need to be picked up. Set a curfew.

5. Discourage any acts of vandalism or animal cruelty (both are popular crimes on Halloween).

6. Make sure your kids’ costumes fit them properly so they do not trip when out walking. And make sure any of their props are safe to hold on to. Any knives and pitchforks should be made out of plastic (NOT real) and dull so that if your child does fall, they won’t be hurt.

7. Make sure they don’t talk to strangers.

8. Be careful when crossing any streets.

(Source: Halloween-Safety.com)

Is Hurricane Earl really Hurricane Bob Version 2? #insurance

September 1, 2010

I decided to do some research. When we say Category 4, we think “oh no!” — especially because in New England, that sort of thing just doesn’t happen. In fact, it hasn’t come close to happening in a long time! So Category 4 — which is pretty bad since 5 is the scariest — can bring winds between 131-155mph. The wind is really where the trouble starts. (I stole those numbers from the chart below from Weather.com).

Saffir’s Scale Hurricane Chart (for your reference) – Courtesy of Weather.com

Then Weather.com goes on to tell us the worded descriptions of the hurricanes. I checked out the one for Category 4 simply becuase seeing the word Extreme in the chart above may have been unnecessarily frightening.

  • Category 4 – Extreme

  • Shrubs, trees, and all signs blown down; extensive damage to roofs, windows, and doors, with complete failure of roofs on many smaller residences; mobile homes demolished.
  • Flat terrain 10 feet or less above sea level flooded inland as far as 6 miles; flooding and battering by waves and floating debris cause major damage to lower floors of structures near the shore; low-lying escape routes inland cut off by rising water about three to five hours before landfall; major erosion of beaches
  • Massive evacuation of inland residences as far inland as 6 miles may be required.
  • What can I say to make this better?

    Well, forecasters seem to say Earl won’t be a category 4 by the time is reaches Eastern MA. Of course if you have a home in the Carolina’s, you should be a little concerned.

    By the time Earl reaches our area, it will have weakened considerably. WHDH’s Pete Bouchard recently blogged that one of the storm’s tracks has its eye passing right over Nantucket. This would mean that the island would get hit the hardest, having winds between 50 and 90 mph. He emphasized “maybe” most likely because he doesn’t want to be wrong. In that scenario, the Cape would also get walloped with 50-70 mph winds. The Greater Boston Area will get hit pretty hard as well with 50-60mph wind gusts. The worst of it seems to be hitting between 8pm and 2am.

    The point is this. Regardless of how much rain we get or how intense Earl will be, you can be sure it is a threat. The wind, specifically, is threatening.

    NBA Insurance advises you all to be prepared. Of course, collect the necessities: water, food, flashlights, batteries, radio in case of power loss. Stay away from windows. You know the basics. Even if you don’t, here are some more:

    1. Bring outdoor objects inside.

    2. Close storm shutters.

    3. Turn off propane tanks and only use your phone for emergencies.

    4. Evacuate if the following conditions apply:

    • You are required or advised to do so.
    • You live in a mobile home.
    • You live in a high-rise.
    • You live on the coast or in a flood-prone area.
    • If you feel you could be in danger.

    5. Reinforce weak or vulnerable areas.

    6. Remove any trees that, if fallen, would damage your property.

    For more tips, visit FEMA’s website.

    South Shore Weather Update- We’ll Let You Know What’s Going On! #insurance #southshore

    August 25, 2010

    A Somerville Public Safety Building was just evacuated due to flooding. This building also flooded in July. (Source: 7News)

    Flood advisories have been issued for the following counties: Essex, Middlesex, Norfolk. A high surf advisory has also been issued for coastal communities. (Source: Weather.com)

    You can be sure though that there is street flooding in areas without a specific flood advisory. So follow the tips below (pasted from an earlier post of mine during another rainy set of days)! And most of all: BE CAREFUL!!

    Check out our tips for driving through flooded areas:

    DRIVING TIPS: (Source: eHow)

    If you cannot avoid driving through floodwaters, take the following precautions:

    -Drive slower due to the minimized visibility and water in the road. You are at risk of hydroplaning. Avoid puddles. Don’t take any sharp turns. Don’t slam on the brakes.

    -If you do hydroplane, ease off your brakes and avoid swerving until  your car regains traction with the road.

    Have You Visited Family Watchdog Yet? Know your neighbors. #insurance #safety

    August 20, 2010

    Family Watchdog was originally founded by Sprint in 2007 as a service that pinpoints sex offenders on a map local to your home, free only to Sprint customers.

    At the homepage, you can type in your Street, City, State & Zip in order to view on a map if there are any sex offenders in your area.

    Why do this? Well, it’s really important to be aware of those around you.

    Below, you can see what the map format looks like. The house icon represents your location/home. The red and yellow squares represent sex offenders in the area. To see who they are,  you simply click the square. It brings you to a new page which tells you his name, address, pseudonyms and convictions.

    Check out these shocking statistics from the Family Watchdog site:

    • 1 of 5 girls and 1 of 6 boys will be molested before their 18th birthday.
    • 90% of all sexual assaults against children are committed by someone whom the victim knew.
    • The typical sexual predator will assault 117 times before being caught.
    • The re-arrest rate for convicted child molesters is 52%.

    Source: GPSMagazine, FamilyWatchdog