Posts Tagged ‘safety’

Wood-Burning Stove Safety

Friday, January 25th, 2019

Having a wood-burning stove as a source of supplemental heat during the colder months can result in significant cost savings on your electric bill, but did you know it can cause an increase in premium on your homeowners insurance?

fire in domestic stove on the kitchen

What to know:

•Even if you have a new wood-burning stove, the act of burning wood as a source of heat creates the possibility of sparking or spitting of hot embers. Taken in combination with combustible materials around your wood-burning stove, there is an increased risk.

•If you are considering having a wood-burning stove installed, be sure it is UL approved and professionally installed. Not only will this help ensure the safety of your home and family, but many insurers will not provide insurance unless certain safety standards or clearances are met. Most insurance carriers will want to do an additional inspection on the unit itself as well.

•Notify your insurance company of the presence of such a stove in your home to ensure you have proper coverage on your home and belongings.

How to maintain wood-stove safety:

•Have the chimney and stove cleaned and inspected annually before you begin using it for the season.

•Look over your unit and chimney regularly for potential cracks. This will help you catch something small before it becomes an issue.

•Follow all clearance requirements in the home. This rule applies to people and pets as well as furniture and other combustible materials. This will help prevent burn injuries as well as limit the risk of a fire starting outside the unit.

•Only burn dry wood. Burning wood can cause deposits known as creosote to build up. If not properly maintained, these deposits can ignite and cause chimney fires.

Having a wood-burning stove doesn’t have to be scary. Make sure you fully understand the risks and responsibilities associated with having one in your home. Also, be sure to talk with your insurance agent or carrier if there are ever any changes in your home that could impact your insurance. Stay warm out there!

References:

https://www.nfpa.org/-/media/Files/Public-Education/Resources/Safety-tip-sheets/WoodPelletStoveSafety.ashx

https://www.doityourself.com/stry/10-safety-tips-to-remember-when-using-a-wood-burning-stove

Content courtesy of Acuity Insurance / Addie B.

7 Tips to Help Keep Your Teen Driver Safe

Friday, May 25th, 2018

Getting a driver’s license is an exciting time for teens, but it can be stressful for parents. Drivers who are 16 have higher crash rates than drivers of any other age, and 20% of teens have an accident in their first year of driving.

Like other drivers, teens have some good and bad habits. The good—they are twice as likely to wear seat belts as their parents. The bad—56% of teens use their phones while driving.

Helping create good driving habits involves talking to your teen and being a good example yourself. Some areas to discuss include:

•Phone usage. Avoid talking on the phone. If necessary, use a hands-free device. Absolutely NO texting, social media, or other Internet usage.

•Seat belts. Always wear them and insist your passengers do too.

•Speeding. Obey the speed limit—going over the limit doesn’t add up to getting there much faster.

•Passenger distractions. The more people in the car, the more likely you are to be distracted.

•Plan your playlist. Turn on your playlist before you start driving, and don’t keep changing the song. If you’re listening to the radio, avoid changing the channel. At highway speeds, your car will travel more than the length of a football field in the time it takes to look down at a radio for just a few seconds.

•Yellow means caution. Don’t speed up to chase a yellow light. Likewise, be careful when the light turns green and watch for drivers who may be running a red.

•Say something. If you’re a passenger and feel unsafe, speak up!

When both parents and children pledge to drive safely and hold each other accountable, it is most effective. Agree on rules they—and you—will follow behind the wheel.

Credit to Acuity Insurance!