Auto Insurance Tips

Preventing your Vehicle from being stolen

There is no single way to make you car 100% theft proof. What you can do is to make the theft of your vehicle difficult by adopting a number of measures which make your car less liable to be stolen by making it difficult to steal your car and look out for a softer target. These measures include:

  • Ensuring you lock you car every time you leave it or even when you are in your car.
  • Do not keep your spare keys in your car and never leave the keys inside even if you have to leave for seconds.
  • Use proper and protected parking slots for parking purposes and avoid parking on roadside unattended.
  • Always turn off the switch when leaving the car
  • Ensure none of your belongings are visible to the eye of a by passer. Keep all important belongings in console box or glove box where they are invisible from the public eye.
  • Engage in community watch system in your neighbourhood. You have a look out on their cars and you keep a check on theirs.
  • Install immobilizer systems if your car does not have one already.
  • Use car alarm systems in your car

Do not hesitate to contact the relevant car protection authorities or agencies in your local area for more assistance in this regard.

Maintenance of your vehicle and its safetye

  • Whenever you get your new or used car, be sure to read its owner’s manual at the earliest to understand its maintenance requirement.
  • Be sure to follow the prescribed maintenance schedule of your car for optimal performance and extended life.
  • It is always better to take a vehicle safety course to be sure you know everything which makes you a safe driver

Braking system

Braking system is the most crucial system installed inside your car. You need to keep it at its optimal working condition in order to ensure your and others safety since any malfunctioning of the braking system of your car can lead to potentially fatal consequences. Some of the indications that your vehicle’s braking system needs attention or servicing are:

  • You hear abnormal sounds from your brakes whenever you apply them. Immediately get your vehicle’s brakes inspected of you hear so.
  • Your car diverts to one side on application of brakes
  • You feel your engine is not responding as it used to and like what occurs when you drive with hand breaks applied. In such a case, the brakes can fail altogether leading to a catastrophe.
  • Braking force is greater than what is expected at a lighter application
  • You feel a change in the level of brake pedal depression which implies that the brake pads have worn out and need urgent replacement.
  • You feel vibrations in your vehicle on application of brakes.

Child Safety

  • Understand the importance of having a child seat installed properly in your car before taking a baby on a ride.
  • For this, you need to thoroughly read and understand the vehicle’s car manufacturer’s recommendations and instructions in this regard.
  • You can consult the local police to seek help in this regard if you face any ambiguity

Transport Canada is the authority responsible for providing detailed information in this regard.

Safety on Road

Road safety is specifically important in the present day’s rush packed and congested roads. To learn more about it, refer to Transport Canada to have a fair idea of road safety.

Seatbelts and Supplemental restraint system (SRS)

The modern day cars and other vehicles now come equipped with a Supplemental Restraint System (SRS) in the form or airbags. These bags packed inside the interior components of your vehicle inflate and deflate in a matter of fractions of a second to save your live in case you meet a collision while riding your vehicle. To know more about how they operate and about the concerned safety problems associated with them you can contact Transport Canada, Insurance Bureau of Canada or Canada Safety Council.

Alcohol and Driving

Never attempt to drive a vehicle when you are under the influence of alcohol. This can lead to disastrous consequences and loss of your or someone else’s life. Know more about the consequences of drunk driving from the Canadian Safety Council or Transport Canada.

Use of Mobile Phones while driving

Although the utility of mobile phones in the present day lifestyle cannot be undermined, yet their use while driving warrants significant distraction from your driving focus. This can lead to a number of unpleasant consequences for you and for others. Therefore, whenever you feel like using your mobile phone for voice calls or texting or for any other reason, stop your car at a place where parking your vehicle is allowed and then use it. Never use your mobile phone while driving.

Driving in winters

Canada’s weather conditions make it necessary for you to be especially careful while driving in the winters as the season poses specific driving challenges. Do not hesitate to contact Transport Canada and the Canadian Safety Council to learn more about safe driving in winters.

How to act if you encounter an accident

If you meet an accident unfortunately, you need to act in the following way to protect yourself and others:

  • Inform the police at once and if necessary, call an ambulance to the scene.
  • Never outwardly admit your liability.
  • Be careful to preserve the details of the incident/ accident which include its date and exact time, the location where it happened and a narration of the how it happened, any trauma sustained, and any of the charges which are laid.
  • Note down the details of those involved in the accident other than you including their name, contact number, licence plate number, vehicle’s mode, make and year of manufacture.
  • It is imperative to get the insurance details of the second party including the insurance company’s detail, their policy reference, and the detail of their insurance broker.
  • Get the police report copy from the concerned police official as you will the accident report’s number for any future reference in this regard.

These tips are general rules of thumb only, and may not fit all situations. For the definitive word, contact your insurance broker. 

Driving Safety Quiz

Contact the Canadian Safety Council to take their quizzes on driving safety in order to be sure if you are a safe driver or not.

Tips for your business insurance

General Fire and Crime Prevention tips

  • Be sure that all the external doors or openings are equipped with deadbolt locks having minimum 1 inch bolt in the strike plates.
  • Be sure of sealing the external door hinge pins to protect them from their being removed.
  • Secure the floor glasses by using bars, metallic screens and theft proof glazed material
  • Consider installing a burglar alarm which can be monitored. Burglar alarm systems in this regard are certified by Underwriter Laboratories of Canada (ULC) for being fool proof.
  • Keep checking unsafe working circumstances and conditions and take immediate actions if any practice is risky.
  • Ensure the presence of fire extinguishers at your establishments and train all of the personnel for their efficient use.

Ensuring the Safety of Your Computers & their Data

  • Anchor the computers to the desks they are lying on so they cannot be removed easily with security kits available for a marginal price.. Security kits are available at a nominal cost.
  • Be sure to backup all important data frequently and regularly and keep this backup at a discrete remote location so it can be retrieved easily.
  • Laptops being portable are soft targets for being stolen. Never leave them without supervision to prevent their loss.
  • Keep a proper record of the identification number of all the computers and related equipment you have.

Preventing Business Interruption

  • Hire a qualified accountant to:
    • Generate your financial statements.
    • Perform an audit of all your registers at least on yearly basis.
  • Populate a standby list of suppliers in cased the primary suppliers are not available due to any reason
  • Always have a second plan of continuing your services in case your establishments undergo renovation after facing a loss. This aids you not to lose your loyal customers on account of not being able to serve. Ensure the availability of alternate premises where you can re-start your service promptly.
  • Curtail any physical or ethical hazards which can potentially bring forward a loss to your work.
  • Copy all your important records to have them stored at a remote location.

Contractors' Loss Prevention Tips

  • Employ planning techniques to your work. Always plan your work before starting a new work.
  • Keep your entire inventory in a secure place before starting the work.
  • Label all your tools with serial numbers of ID numbers to find them with ease.
  • All storage of inventory on the site must be in a properly allocated area for storage. High cost materials with limited use should be kept off-site and brought only when needed on the site and re-shifted immediately after their use.
  • Place appropriate warning signs to limit access and demarcate the safety equipment needed to enter.
  • Any electric lines which go through walking zones must be protected so as to avoid electrical tripping.
  • Any water/mud at open-for-public traffic zones must be cleared on a regular basis.
  • Local authorities must be contacted to apprise of the under-ground facilities in case any excavations at your side are needed to be done.
  • Any fluids which are flammable in nature must be kept in properly designed safety containers approved for the use.
  • Control hotwork being done. Materials which can catch fire must be present at a distance of at least eleven metres away from hotwork. If it is impossible, non-combustible shields are to be utilized. All regulations in force regarding hotwork should be adhered to.
  • Any combustible waste generated along the work must be cleared on a regular basis.
  • Fire extinguishing equipment of the required capacity must always be present at the site.
  • All sub-contractors should be bound to furnish their certificates of liability to make sure they are covering their liabilities.
  • Clients should be required to endorse that their jobs are done.
  • New equipment must be thoroughly inspected after doing the job.
  • Make sure the jobs are compliant to standards and SOPs prescribed in this regard.
  • Keep record of all the necessary documents, sanctions and work plans for each job.

Prevention of Office Loss

  • Ensure electrical sockets and supplies are not overloaded specifically in the case of older establishments having fused supplies in place of modern circuit-breakers.
  • If present electricity supply is not sufficient, make sure any needed changes are made by an authorised technician.
  • Enforce the fire code at your office and make sure all the required items are in place and in working condition including the fire alarm systems, emergency exit signs and lighting.
  • Swipe wet floors promptly, display warning signs regarding slippery floors and keep an eye on surface of floors for any hazards on a on-going basis.

Tips on Preventing Commercial Vehicle Losses

  • Exercise caution hiring appointing the drivers of your vehicles by having proper pre-employment checks for them. Vehicles need to be appropriate for the nature of work and the relevant expertise of the drivers who operate them. A careful driver, having clear driving history is the detrimental in curtailing risk of sustaining injury to himself and any passengers he is carrying
  • Drivers must not entertain anyone who is not allowed by the owner or authorised managers to board their vehicles.
  • Regular maintenance ensures road safety and must be done by authorized and properly qualified mechanical personnel. Proper maintenance history must be maintained to avoid any accidents due to a mechanical failure.
  • Arrange for inspection of all vehicles each day according to a pre-defined inspection checklist. Equip the vehicle with all necessary tools to counter any emergency.
  • Careful use of the vehicles leads to their extended life and also avoids harm to the belongings of others. Always prefer well-maintained roads for plying. Cruise at a pace which is under the notified limit for the road. Well-anchored luggage avoids your load from spilling on the roadways causing damage to others. Improper luggage loading or loading in excess can lead to an accident. Vehicles must only be utilized for their designated use.
  • Properly lock your vehicle and carry the keys with you for any length of stay, however short. Never leave the keys in the ignition switch.
  • Do not keep the engine on in an unattended vehicle.
  • Take good care of vehicle keys and don’t ever have the vehicle keys and other business operations’ keys in one key ring. Avoid attaching any identification tags to the keys.
  • Precious articles in a vehicle which are viewable serve as an attraction to the thieves. Examples include money as cash, cards or, cheque books.
  • Any delivery should be endorsed with a receiver’s signature otherwise should not be made.
  • Only places with adequate lighting should be used for parking the vehicle. The vehicle should be stored in a secure garage or a suitably protected site if it is not being used.
  • Select the steal-proofing devices diligently. A lot of them are present in the market to secure the vehicle and its contents. Select those devices which are best suited to your protect needs.

Loss Prevention Tips for Repair Garages

  • Make stringent rules to prohibit the customers from gaining access to the car service bays. Well maintained and well services customer waiting areas are necessary to avoid people getting injured to due to falling down accidents as a result of any spillage.
  • Always have work orders that define the authorized repairs signed from the customers before starting the work. This minimizes the possibility of ambiguities and disputes regarding the work being undertaken.
  • A customer's work order should have all the done repairs along with all the prescribed repairs turned down by the customer and the customer should then endorse the work order, including the turned down recommendations. This protects you from liability losses which can ensue if recommended works are not done to the car.
  • Ensure that the front, back and inside of the business precincts are illuminated well, especially after closing.
  • If over-night possession of client’s vehicles is essential, they should preferably be kept inside the premises with locks at all the external exits. However, if parking vehicles outside is necessary on a continual basis, the specified area must be well illuminated, properly fenced and you must padlock it every night.
  • Develop a protocol with garage workers to check their access to clients’ car keys. The keys must be stored in a locker situated in the office. This minimizes the availability of keys to vandals and thieves thereby minimizing the chances of clients’ vehicles being taken away or vandalized.
  • Keep a check on the magnitude of cash money in the till by utilizing a safe or using a device which limits money. Ensure frequent cash deposits to your bank accounts.
  • Make sure that you have precise records of your stock which includes the tools, spare parts and other articles. In case of something going missing, these records make it possible for the insurance company to give you a fair settlement in an efficient manner.
  • Develop SOPs for your staff regarding permission to test drive clients’ vehicles.
  • Make sure all test-drives take a decided course ideally in areas having low traffic. This can substantially minimize the risk of incurring a loss to a client’s vehicle.

Prevention Tips for Retail Loss

  • Don’t stock combustible items like card-board or paper based articles close to the stoves or potential flame generating electrical appliances and eliminates the combustible waste regularly.
  • In establishments with sprinklers, store the stocks greater than eighteen inches down from the heads of sprinkler to avoid interfering with the sprinkler’s efficiency in case a fire builds up.
  • Refrain from putting excess load on the electrical sockets, especially in the traditional establishments having fuses in place of modern circuit breakers.
  • Always have your entire inventory lifted away from the floor preferably stacked in shelves, cup boards or racks
  • Make the inside design of the warehouse such that the till portion is prominently visible from the outside of the establishment.
  • Keep a check on the magnitude of cash money in the till by utilizing a safe or using a device which limits money. Ensure frequent cash deposits to your bank accounts.
  • If your outlet remains operational for extended hours, ensure the operation of CCTV cameras and alarming alerts.
  • Ensure frequent cash deposits to your bank accounts.
  • Make sure the safety arrangements like fire alert alarming systems, exit signs and emergency lights are in working order at all times and are regularly maintained according to the fire code prescriptions.
  • Never hamper the exit gates with inventory and equipment. Make sure all exits are kept unlocked during operational time.

Slip and Fall Loss Prevention Tips

  • Examine the inside of your building frequently for anything which can cause a slip and fall loss. Develop daily logs of inspections, conditions noted and corrective actions done.
  • Floor must be tidy and in satisfactory condition always with eroded or protruding pieces of floor being changed promptly.
  • Make sure aisles are always free of any dropped items like fruits or vegetables etc.
  • In rainy season, all entries must be equipped with rugs to enable keeping the floor dry and tidy. Sabotaged rugs must be changed immediately.
  • Non-slipping wax preparations must be applied on floor surfaces when and where they are needed.
  • Fluid spill-overs must be mopped promptly and a sign advising caution for a wet Floor must be displayed.
  • Surfaces remaining mostly slippery should be treated with nonslip epoxy. Alternatively, non-slip flooring can be installed.
  • For spillage of oils or other manufacturing materials, absorbent, non-combustible cleaning accessories must be employed.
  • Make sure all entries are free of obstacles or any promotional materials.
  • Examine the outside of your building on frequent basis for circumstances potentially leading to slip and fall losses. Make a log of inspections on daily basis noting the conditions and corrective measures undertaken.
  • All damages to staircases, side-walks and pavement must be undone at the earliest posting warning signs and barriers until completion of repair work.
  • A snow/ice clearance drive should be initiated and implemented making a single person responsible for it.
  • Keep the necessary equipment and tools for use by the staff in event of a weather induced emergency.
  • Snow clearing contractors can be employed to maintain car park and walkway. Make sure the contractor maintains a complete log of the work he does.
  • Keep sewer, gutters and downspouts clean and make sure that the melted snow is kept away from the walkways. Keep external lighting adequate and keep checking on frequent basis.
  • Make and implement a daily waste management plan in which walkways and sidewalks are swiped, mopped and debris eliminated regularly.

Home

Crime Prevention Tips Tips for Inside Your Home Tips for Outside Your Home What NOT to Do
Going on Vacation What to Do if Your House is Broken Into

Crime Prevention Tips

Theft is truly termed as a crime of opportunity. Some interesting facts about it arw:

  • Research proves that mostly the burglars operate during daytime when vegetation and trees hide them from being caught and the premised seem vacant.
  • 1/3rd of the burglars get entry through the basement of the premises.
  • 1/3rd of the burglars get forced entry via either windows or doors
  • 1/3rd of the burglars get entry through an incidentally opened door/window

The best way to guard your house is to examine it from a burglar's view point. Identify the vulnerable areas. Take a few convenient and low cost measures to make your home non-attractive to the burglar. These are a few points to aid you guard against burgulars:

Tips for Inside Your Home

The aim is to protect your home and to make it seem occupied at any time. The tips are:

  • Secure your house.
  • Lower the curtains when night starts so that belongings cannot be seen.
  • Keep all doors/windows locked before you leave your home.
  • Close windows so that they cannot be unlocked from outside. If you can't lock them, pin them using a hole drilled across both the frames stuffing a bolt. The bolt should be uncountable by you in emergencies.
  • Home alarm systems are definitely valuable but even if you have one, never undermine other security features you can employ. Alarms do provide additional security, but are not intended to replace the common sense. You must still do what you can to ensure your house is not being attractive for burglars.
  • Ensure that your house seems inhabited at all times.
  • Employ timers to keep in place lighting at right times.
  • Keep an audio output device like a radio on when you go away from house for short spans.
  • Secure your valuable belongings.
  • Mark your belongings engraving them with your licence or your social insurance numbers to make them less attractive for thieves.
  • Keeps a stock of your house using photographs or videos.
  • Have your jewellery and other valuables in a safe or at a trivial place.

Tips for Outside Your Home

  • There are a lot of modifications for the outside of your home to block a forced entry.
  • Have your vegetation cut so that it doesn't hamper your view from your windows or doors.
  • Protect the window installed air conditioners from the interior.
  • Lighten up as much of your home as possible at night.
  • Exterior doors need to be tough one. Metallic doors offer the best protection from a forced entry.
  • Fence styling should not hide a burglar's movements. Note that if you cannot view what’s going outside, those outside cannot see what’s going inside.
  • Door hinges on the external side must have a fixed center pin which cannot be tampered.
  • Use dead-bolt locks.
  • Dogs are a challenge for the burglars. Even a fictitious Beware of Dog sign can do the trick.
  • Install hinged security bars on the basement vents. However keep the key in a known accessible location for an emergency exit.
  • Make sure that a burglar is unable to get to the roof using high trees or a ladder you forgot outside.

What NOT to Do

  • Never display a name plate having your full name. A burglar can utilize this to search your number from the telephone directory or web and call at your landline number to check if you are home or not.
  • Never leave a note on the door announcing that you are away from your home.
  • Never leave the spare keys in an easily accessible place like your mailbox or concealed under any door mat.
  • Never leave any cash or valuables open to view in your house.
  • Never leave the doors unlocked when you happen to be on the opposite side of your home.

Going on Vacation

If you are leaving for a vacation, it is particularly necessary to make your house feel inhabited. To completely secure your house, you require the help of some of the most trusted neighbours, relatives or friends. Here are some tips:

  • Pause all of your mail/post.
  • Ask a neighbour to trim the grass or clear your shovel snow.
  • Pause all your deliveries for the time you won’t be home.
  • Use timers for turning lights off and on.
  • Request a neighbour to place a garbage bag in front of your house on the day of collection.
  • Keep an audio device or a radio on.
  • Request a neighbour to park their vehicle in your driveway.
  • Request neighbours to pick up flyers intended for you.
  • Never disclose your vacation plans to strangers or irrelevant people.
  • Mark your work address on your luggage instead of your home address so a burglar cannot know where your vacant house is.
  • If possible, lift the valuables from your home. Any valuables must be kept in a safety deposit box.
  • Lock the garage door.

Note:  Before leaving, you must tell a trustworthy contact:

  • That you shall be away from your home.
  • The length of your absence.
  • If you are hiring a house sitter or not.
  • Your contact details where you can be traced.

What to Do if Your House is Broken Into

Despite all the efforts, a burglar may still gain entry to your home. Unfortunately, if you return to discover that your house was robbed:

  • Never stay there, your safety is first and foremost
  • Do not confront a burglar or seal the house’s exit
  • Get promptly to your neighbour's home or another safe location nearby and call the police

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