Our Top Safety Tips for National Safety Month

National Safety Month is an annual campaign to raise awareness about safety issues and how to prevent accidents. Safety starts with you. The goal of National Safety Month is to encourage everyone to take responsibility for their own safety and the safety of those around them. There are many things you can do to stay safe, both at home and at work. 

In this blog post, we cover some of the most important safety tips for National Safety Month.

Identify and Avoid Risks

The first major step in any safety situation is to identify any risks that could harm yourself or others and find ways to avoid those risks. This can pertain to your home, neighborhood, school, workplace or even public activities, for example. 

try increasing the number of first aid kits in your home and try to have one with you at all times. For example, you could have a main first aid kit in your home and a smaller one to keep in the car. Also, if you have a pool, make sure to provide water safety tips to any swimmers.

You can also create emergency awareness through practice drills at home, improving protocol safety processes at work, or sharing a suggested emergency exit procedure for a local public event to promote health and safety for everyone. 

Additional Safety Tips

  1. Wear proper safety gear. This includes gloves, goggles and earplugs when working with loud machinery, farm equipment or home power tools.
  2. Be aware of your surroundings and know what to do in an emergency. For example, be familiar with the exits in buildings, know how to turn off gas and water valves and have a plan for what to do if there is a fire.
  3. Follow safety rules and regulations to help prevent accidents. This includes wearing a seatbelt, keeping your eyes on the road and not exceeding the speed limit. Remember, good safety habits are those that we should do all the time, not just during National Safety Month.

By following these tips, you can help make National Safety Month a success. Take the time to learn about safety and how to prevent accidents. The best way to keep up to date on the most recent 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. Stay safe this month and every month!

If you have any questions or concerns that you want to discuss, please connect with us 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.

6 Best Storm Season Safety Hacks

Oklahomans know that storm season is no joke. Even mild storms can often lead to long power outages and even cause damage to your home. Stocking up on batteries and snacks are must-dos, but here are some next-level storm season safety hacks that will help with maintaining some normalcy and keeping your family safe if you’re affected by Oklahoma’s notorious spring weather. 

  1. Turn a can of cooking oil into a candle in an emergency. First, place a string or piece of cotton into the middle of a can of cooking oil. Then, all you have to do is light it! This trick also works with lard. (Be careful!)
  2. Keep cool without air conditioning. It can be a good idea in the summer to fill up empty two-liters with water and keep them in the freezer. If the power goes out, place one frozen two-liter in front of a battery-operated fan and sit directly in front of it for a DIY air conditioner.
  3. Dogs and thunderstorms are sometimes not a good mix, but it might not be for the reason you think! Static electricity can build up in their fur. Rub a dryer sheet over your dog’s fur to help alleviate the static and calm him or her down.
  4. Run out of AA batteries for flashlights or other electronics? There is a way to convert AAA batteries with a ball of foil. Try inserting a ball of foil between the negative end of the AAA battery and the device to generate power.
  5. In a pinch, the washer and dryer serve as good storage spaces for valuables in case of flooding.
  6. Make a milk jug lantern. First, simply remove the label from a milk jug and fill it with water. Then, strap a headlight onto the jug with the light facing inward. The jug will create a soft light that will illuminate the room.

While storms can sometimes catch us off guard, it’s a good idea to plan ahead when possible. Before a storm rolls in, check out our storm prep checklist:

  • Charge up phones and electronics.
  • Check the sump pump, and make sure it’s working properly in case of flooding.
  • Clear the gutters. See if there is a way to keep water from flowing down the side of your home and causing damage. 
  • Trim your trees. This could help ensure your home and vehicles will not be damaged by falling branches.
  • Secure outdoor furniture. Oklahoma winds are strong enough to blow away or damage unsecured furniture, grills and playground equipment.
  • Fill up the gas tank. This way you and your loved ones can move to a safer location if needed.
  • Check the emergency kit. Then, replenish any missing supplies and important medications.  
  • Purchase a hand crank emergency radio. This could come in handy and keep you informed if the power goes out. 

In addition to these storm season hacks, don’t forget to read up on a few storm season safety tips and additional ways to prepare for a tornado. Along with staying safe, remember to contact your local OKFB agent to talk through your coverage in the case of a tornado or severe weather. We have agents in all 77 counties and ready to help whenever, wherever. See how one of our agents, Billy Gibson, took care of Carl Holmes and his other policyholders when a tornado went through this town three years ago. 

Stay safe, Oklahoma!

Safety Tips for Recreational Vehicles

Some of life’s greatest joys happen while sitting around a campfire, making a wake on the lake or cruising down a backroad. Whether you own a boat, motorcycle, off-road vehicle or motorhome, recreation insurance can help protect you and your vehicle from the unexpected. In addition to this insurance safety measure, you need to practice extra caution when operating any of these vehicles. Here are some of the safety tips to keep in mind for each recreational vehicle: 

Boat safety

Time spent on the water can leave you with lasting memories. Relax without worry, knowing you have taken these steps to ensure a safe boat ride or activity. 

  • Equipment: Everyone on board must have a life jacket of appropriate size available to them. Other equipment, including oars, a bailing bucket, a whistle, visual distress signals, navigation lights, a fire extinguisher and an anchor are also required by the U.S. Coast Guard to have on board while you boat. 
  • Operating tips: Make sure the person steering the boat is aware of the rules for safe boating. A few of the major rules to follow include: Check the weather beforehand, don’t exceed the boat weight or passenger limit, don’t drink and steer the boat, follow wake zone speed limits and always be aware of nearby swimmers. 

Motorcycle safety

Whether you’re taking your motorcycle for a long road trip or a short joy ride, it’s important to take steps to ensure a safe journey.  

  • Equipment: Always wear a helmet and limit the number of passengers to the number allowed on your specific bike. You should also consider wearing gear that protects you from debris, potential accidents and the weather. Leather jackets, sturdy boots and protective eyewear are all great items to help shield you from possible dangers. 
  • Operating tips: When driving a motorcycle, it’s always recommended to drive defensively. This means never assuming other drivers on the road can see you, since motorcycles are much less visible vehicles. To make yourself a little more visible, avoid driving in blind spots or driving too closely to other vehicles. Also, as with any other vehicle, check for weather that could cause hazardous driving conditions.

Off-Road Vehicle safety

Your weekend getaway may include straying off the main path and getting some mud on the tires. For your next off-road adventure, follow these safety tips: 

  • Equipment: Just like motorcycles, helmets are always a must on an off-road vehicle. Driving an open vehicle through rough terrain at accelerated speeds means there’s a great risk for head injury. Wearing gear like goggles, long pants and boots is also recommended to help protect you from flying debris or tall grass, limbs or rocks that could injure you. 
  • Operating tips: Never drive your off-road vehicle on highways, streets or paved roads. Regularly check your vehicle’s functions like steering, brakes and tires. Also, make sure you’re operating an off-road vehicle that’s right for your age and never allow passengers on a single-rider vehicle. 

About Recreation Insurance

Following these safety tips can help reduce your chances of an accident, but a small chance will always remain. Whether you have a boat, motorhome, motorcycle or off-road vehicle, recreation insurance can help cover your vehicle and passengers if something unexpected does happen. To learn more about the features offered in our recreational policies or to get a quote, contact an OKFB agent near you.

Protection for your Backyard Swimming Pool

Having a swimming pool provides refreshing relief from the sun and heat. It may even be a savior during long summer days. However, it also presents some risks. It’s important to be aware of how a pool can impact your insurance. If you’re thinking about adding a swimming pool or buying a home with one, we are sharing tips on safety and insurance coverage.

An “Attractive Nuisance”

Insurance companies consider pools an attractive nuisance. To explain, an “attractive nuisance” is anything that may attract or be dangerous to an unsupervised child. For instance, things like trampolines, playgrounds and man-made ponds are all considered attractive nuisances. As a homeowner, you are held liable and are responsible for preventing potential harm your pool could have. This is why obtaining coverage can be critical. Especially since insurance policies may require you to meet certain safety measures before providing coverage. 

Safety Precautions

Typically, insurance companies require special precautions before including coverage. Here are some required safety precautions:

  1. Install a fence around the entire perimeter of the pool, with a self-latching gate lock that children can’t reach. 
  2. Get a safety cover to serve as a secondary barrier. Lockable pool covers are a great way to help ensure children are not using it without supervision.
  3. Provide accessible safety equipment. Flotation devices near the pool for children who are not able to swim yet. 

Consequently, fulfilling safety measures could prevent denied insurance coverage or claims, cancelled policies and large liability lawsuits.  

Insurance Options For a Pool

Pool insurance by itself doesn’t exist. You’ll need to talk to an OKFB Insurance agent to learn more about coverage options. Also, it may be beneficial to add an umbrella policy, which can provide an additional layer of liability coverage. We offer personal umbrella insurance that’s designed to protect you and your family from lawsuits not fully covered under a standard liability policy.