College Safety – Renters Insurance

Back-to-school season is a time of new beginnings, especially for those going off to college for the first time. With excitement of the new school year comes a set of new worries and concerns for students and parents alike. Safety should be at the top of every new student’s college checklist. In this blog, we share some of our top tips, like having renters insurance, on how students can stay safe while living on campus.

What is Renters Insurance?

Renters insurance is one of the most important things you can invest in as a college student living on or off campus. This type of insurance will protect your belongings in the event that they are damaged or stolen. It can also provide liability protection that can cover bodily injury from an incident occurring on your rented property.

This type of insurance protects a person’s belongings. While landlords or school buildings also have insurance, their protection generally only covers the building, not an individual student’s or tenant’s property.

It is always important to know what your individual renters insurance covers in case of an emergency. Many landlords require their tenants to carry renters insurance, so be sure to check your lease agreement before signing anything.

Tips to Stay Safe This School Year

When it comes to personal safety in a new space, there are a few simple steps you can take to reduce your personal risk.

  1. Get to know your neighbors and build a relationship with them. This way, you will have someone to rely on if you ever need help or have an emergency. Having open communication with people that are in your daily life can make all the difference during a tough situation. Knowing you can reach out to someone close by can reduce the stress of being in a new environment.
  2. Always be aware of your surroundings and trust your gut—if something doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t.
  3. Make note of the regular day-to-day flow of your neighborhood community, building or apartment complex. If something feels off, it will be easier to notice and you will feel more comfortable.
  4. For personal safety, the outside of your home is a vulnerable area, so be sure to stay alert until you are inside. If you have to park your car outside, be sure to lock it as you leave and check the surrounding area.
  5. Finally, make sure your doors and windows are locked at all times, even when you are in your home.

Having a safety plan in place is always the best practice for any potential future emergency situations.

By following these tips, students and parents can help ensure that everyone has a safe and enjoyable school year. The best way to keep up to date on the most recently provided safety procedures is to go to the National Safety Council’s website and stay aware of your community guidelines on home and neighborhood safety. It could save your life, or the life of someone you love.

We’re here to help

If you have questions or concerns that you want to discuss, connect with your local OKFB agent today. If you have any insurance-specific questions, we would love to help you find the coverage that best meets your home, auto, commercial and life insurance needs.

Don’t forget to follow us on social media! This kind of information and more is just a click away. You can find us on Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn.

Back-to-School Safety 101

It’s that time of year again! Kids everywhere are gearing up for another exciting school year. While back-to-school season is a time of new beginnings and fresh starts, it’s also a great opportunity to brush up on some essential back-to-school safety tips.

As a parent, you want to make sure your children are as safe as possible when they’re traveling to and from school. In this blog, we’ll discuss some top tips kids can use to stay safe while walking, biking or scooting in your neighborhood.

The New School Year is Right Around the Corner

As we launch into the new school year, it’s important to remember that your community will see increased school-related activities and pedestrians.

  • When you’re driving in a school zone, be sure to obey the posted speed limit and watch for children who may be crossing the street, especially when school buses are present.
  • Keep an eye out for crosswalk guards and security directing traffic in busy or crowded areas. It’s also a good idea to avoid making any sudden stops or turns, as this could cause an accident.
  • Be extra cautious when backing up, and always look behind you before you start moving, even if you have a back-up camera. Unfortunately, back-up cameras have blind spots and don’t always see smaller children or pets.
  • If you have to park in a school zone, make sure you’re not blocking the sidewalk or crosswalk. There are usually designated drop-off and pick-up areas for this purpose.

Do Your Kids Walk to School?

When your children are walking to and from school, there are a few things you can do to help them stay safe.

  • Teach them to always look both ways before crossing the street and know the safe areas to cross when there is oncoming traffic.
  • Children should also be aware of their surroundings at all times and avoid walking alone in areas that are not well lit or where there is no sidewalk.
  • If they’re old enough, consider having them carry a cell phone so they can call you if they need help.
  • Always keep emergency contact information in your child’s backpack.
  • Help your children be aware of safe places to stop along their route if they need help.

Do Your Kids Bike or Scooter to School?

While you may be close enough to allow your kids to walk to school, they may prefer riding their bikes or scooter to get to their destination. While the safety tips and tricks above are still important for these commuters, here are a few extra safety tips for anyone rolling to school on wheels.

  • Make sure they’re wearing a properly-fitting helmet. Head injuries are one of the most common injuries on a bicycle or scooter, so it’s important for children to wear helmets at all times.
  • Teach them to always ride on the right side of the road, and to use hand signals when turning.
  • Children should also be aware of any potential hazards, such as potholes, glass or other debris.
  • Finally, remind them to obey all traffic laws, including stop signs and traffic lights. As they get closer to the school, they should follow the rules laid out by school security and officials to safely navigate the parking lot and school sidewalks.

As a parent, it’s important to make sure our children are safe and prepared when they’re traveling to and from school. Stay up-to-date on the most recent back-to-school safety procedures by visiting the National Safety Council’s website. In addition, be aware of your community guidelines on school safety.

If you have questions, connect with your local OKFB agent today. We would love to help you find the coverage that best meets your home, auto, commercial and life insurance needs.

Don’t forget to follow us on social media! This kind of information and more is just a click away. You can find us on Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn.

Hot Car Safety Tips

As many of us hit the road to travel this summer, or just to head to work or school, we might enjoy the sunshine and its accompanying warmth! Summer heat, however, adds an extra layer of complications to our drives. As temperatures rise, so do risks of accident and injury as it relates to the vehicle, passengers and pets in the car. Take a look at these hot car risks as well as safety tips for avoiding these situations.

Complete Routine Maintenance Checks

Scheduling routine checks for the vehicle could help lower the chances of having a heat-related car breakdown. Check out the air conditioner, radiator/cooling system, belts, hoses and oil and replace or repair them if needed. Don’t forget about the tires – fill up the tires and the spare to the right air pressure level. Driving under-inflated tires can cause them to overheat easier and that can increase the chance of a blowout. 

Keep Your Vehicle Cool  

The vehicle interior of a parked car can heat up quickly, posing some dangers to your health when you first re-enter it. Take care when entering the car to avoid touching the steering wheel and seats until the surfaces have cooled down. Consider installing seat covers, steering wheel cover, permanent window tint, or windshield sun shades to help block the sun’s rays. These items could help keep your car cool and protect the interior. 

Never Leave A Child or Animal Unattended

If you’re running errands with a child or animal in tow, avoid leaving them in the car, even for a short period of time. Instead, consider using drive-thru services or curbside pickup. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, a car’s interior temperature could rise 20 degrees in approximately 10 minutes. Even leaving the windows cracked or rolled down does not slow the heat acceleration. 

Prepare an Emergency Kit

Even if you’ve prepared your vehicle for summer travel, it never hurts to have a “just in case” kit in your trunk. Fill it with items like water, sunscreen, non-perishable foods/snacks, jumper cables, road flares, flashlight, first aid kit and more. 

Incorporating these tips can help keep you cool on the hot, sunny days in Oklahoma. While you follow these tips, also remember we offer auto insurance to protect you on your journey. Contact an OKFB agent to discuss your auto needs or current policy – you may be eligible for our roadside assistance policy addition. 

Farming Safely in the Heat

The heat of summer can be a busy time for many farming and ranching operations. As you work in the heat and sun, follow these heat safety tips to help ward off heat-related illnesses and injuries for you and your team. Farming and ranching are important, and we want to help you stay safe doing what you do best.

Wear Protective Clothing

When working outdoors in warm climates, OSHA recommends wearing light-colored, loose-fitting and breathable clothing. Additionally, covering up by wearing long-sleeved shirts and long pants can help protect you from the sun’s harmful rays. Wearing a wide-brim hat and sunglasses that block 99% to 100% UVA and UVB radiation could also protect your face and eyes while working. 

Take Breaks

Taking 15-minute breaks in a cool, shady area at least every two hours while working can help decrease the risk of heat-related illness and fatigue. You could use an outbuilding nearby or the air-conditioned cab of your truck. It could also be helpful to schedule strenuous and demanding tasks in the early morning hours or late evening hours, when the temperature isn’t at its hottest. 

Don’t Forget to Fuel-up

Remember to take time during your workday to drink water and eat sustaining foods/snacks. The CDC recommends drinking one cup of water for every 15 to 20 minutes of moderate activity. Ensuring you’re hydrated throughout the day could lower your risk of heat exhaustion, and it can power you up to continue safely getting work done. As for snacks, consider having fresh fruits, vegetables and salted items to help boost energy and balance electrolytes. 

Know the Symptoms

It is important to know the symptoms and warning signs of heat-related illnesses. You should seek medical attention if you or one of your employees are experiencing these symptoms:

  • Heat exhaustion: This occurs when the body is becoming dehydrated. Some symptoms include profuse sweating, shallow breathing, muscle cramps, irritability, feeling faint or dizzy.
  • Heatstroke: This occurs when the body cannot control its internal temperature and is unable to cool down. Some symptoms include the absence of sweating, pulsating headache, difficulty breathing, lethargy, lack of coordination, unconsciousness, nausea or vomiting.

While you’re working hard and looking out for the health of you and your team by using these heat safety tips, we can help by providing coverage for your farm or ranch. Let us take care of the unexpected and help protect your livelihood with our Farm & Ranch Insurance.

Contact an OKFB agent to discuss your farm and ranch needs.