We’ve all heard about them, and maybe you’ve experienced one for yourself; a holiday disaster is anything that interrupts or takes away from the joy and merriment of the season. When it comes to safety, you can never be too cautious. Continue reading to learn four steps to prevent accidents.
1. Protect the Things You Give and Get
Most people will purchase gifts this season, and perhaps even receive some as well. While the average person is expected to spend a little more than $900 on gifts for others in December, some will splurge on high-value gifts worth much more. Maybe it’s a new ATV for your son, or perhaps you are planning to propose to your future wife with a shiny new engagement ring. Whatever it may be, when it comes to valuable items, it pays to talk with your insurance agent about coverage. Some gifts may be automatically covered by the personal belongings coverage on your renter’s or homeowner’s policy. Others, such as fine jewelry, may have limited coverage. If you are either giving or have received a big ticket item, talk to your agent about an endorsement to provides more complete protection.
2. Use Caution with Candles
Millions of homes across the U.S. use candles to create a warm and inviting atmosphere. However, candles can be particularly dangerous – especially this time of year. According to the American Red Cross, fires caused by candles are four times more likely to occur during the winter holidays than during any other time of the year. The safest plan is to avoid using candles altogether, instead opting for flameless versions. If you still wish to use candles in your home, be sure to keep them away from items that are flammable and out of the reach of children or pets who may knock them over.
3. Protect Your Car and Home
In a season full of cheer, it’s sometimes easy to forget that there are criminals waiting to take advantage of anyone they can. Many thieves are opportunistic, meaning they wait for an opportunity to easily carry out a crime rather than target a specific person or place. Cars, for example, are an easy target this time of year, since many people leave them running unattended during cold weather. Likewise, homes are an easy hit when crooks know the owners are out of town. While you may have an affordable car insurance or homeowners insurance policy that will help take care of your losses, it’s better to avoid them altogether by taking certain precautions.
Here at Tagge Insurance, we recommend always parking your car in well-lit areas and keeping the windows and doors shut and locked. Never leave your vehicle running unattended for any period of time, and never leave valuable items visible inside your car.
At home, keep your lights set to a timer when you are out of town, and ask a neighbor to keep an eye out on your property. Also, never advertise your travel plans on social media since you never know who may be watching your posts.
4. Protect the People You Love
The holidays can be a dangerous time to drive. The average road trip during the Christmas and New Year’s holidays is well over 200 miles. If you plan to be on the road, make sure you are prepared for potential hazards, such as:
- Poor visibility
- Wintery precipitation
- Aggressive drivers
- Drowsy drivers
- Intoxicated drivers
- Distracted drivers
Keep your vehicle well-maintained and stocked with supplies in case of an emergency, and avoid driving late at night, when inebriated drivers may be leaving bars and holiday parties. Also remember that other drivers may be distracted by holiday displays, drowsy from a hectic holiday schedule, or even short-tempered due to holiday stress. Because of this, practice defensive driving habits. You may not be able to control the actions of others, but you can take steps to protect yourself.
Have a safe and happy holiday season!