Pet Disaster Plans
We love our pets – they’re an integral part of our family. The Humane Society has put together some great tips to help keep our pets safe during Hurricane season (and any other natural disaster that may befall us!).
ID Collars and Tags: Make sure your pet has and ID collars and identification tag. Microchips are wonderful, and you should have them, but in times of emergency your pets may be found by people who have no way of reading microchips. It’s also a good idea to have your cell phone number on the collar and tags.
Cats: If you plan to outrun a hurricane with a cat or two, one of our staff members learned last year, she needed pet harnesses for each cat when travelling with cats. Litter boxes aren’t really road trip friendly. Apparently, the cats did well with the leashes.
Disaster Kit: Your pet needs a disaster kit as much as you do. Fill it with food, medications, pet harnesses, etc.
Lodging: Changes are that not all shelters allow pets. Call your local emergency management office to see which shelters allow pets. Also check with hotel and motel chains to see if they accept pets. Be sure to mention it’s for evacuation purposes as some “no pets” policies are lifted in times of emergency. Compile a list of pet friendly lodging options and make reservations as soon as you know you need to evacuate. Another lodging option is to place your pet with friends and relatives who do not have to evacuate.
Take a few minutes and put your “pet plan” together now!
Summer and Your Car
With summer comes heat. It may be ideal for the beach, but it can be really hard on your car. Spring is the time to pamper your car. AutoTrader has put together a car checkup list to keep your car in good shape in the summer.
Coolant. Check the level of coolant fluid. It’s important that the coolant isn’t allowed to get low. Also check for leaks and for the condition of the hoses. When the engine is cool, squeeze the hoses – they should feel firm, not squishy or soft.
Engine Belts. You may want to have your mechanic check the belts if you’re not familiar with them. Any cracks or small missing pieces mean trouble and it’s time to replace the belt.
Windshield Wipers. We live in Florida and it rains a lot throughout the summer! When the wipers are worn they make streaks across the windshield making it hard to see, especially in bright sunlight. Any oil change facility or auto parts store can replace your wipers if you’re not comfortable doing it yourself.
Fluids. Your car’s engine is full of places that hold fluids that are constantly being used and can run low. Check the fluid level of the following: oil, brake, power-steering, windshield wiper, clutch, etc.
Brakes. How do they feel? Have they lost their zing? Feel a bit spongy? If you answered yes to either of these, have your brakes checked. You may need new pads or the system bled.
Air-Conditioning. Yes, you can live without it, but who wants to! Older cars may have a Freon system that may have developed leaks. Have your mechanic check for leaks if your air isn’t blowing cold. On a day when the temperature is well into the 90s, you’ll be glad you had you’re A/C checked!
Tires. Have all four tires (and your spare) checked for tread condition and for tire pressure. We tend to drive more in the summer and a bad tire can put a real damper on a trip. You may want to keep a can of Fix-A-Flat in your trunk – it will help you get to a safe place to change the tire or to a repair shop.
Insurance. Spring is a great time to check in with your insurance agent to talk about your coverage!
Follow the above tips and enjoy a safe summer in your car!
Disclaimer: Not an actual ARCW staff desk, we’re organized folks…. most of the time.
Spring Clean Your Workspace
Spring cleaning isn’t just for your home. Your office needs some TLC too! Beyond the Office Door (www.btod.com) has great tips on how to make your workspace look great!
Papers. We’re all guilty of this – we let papers pile up to the point that it seems like they’ve grown and taken over your desk! First off, organize papers as you get them. Create a filing system that works for you; maybe filing by importance or by subject. Now that you’re cleaning, go through the papers and either file or purge them.
Your Stuff. Make a point to keep only the items you use daily in sight and easy reach. Put everything else in a drawer. For instance, if you don’t use your stapler every day, de-clutter your desk by putting it in a drawer. Same goes for scotch tape, extra pens and pencils, etc. Check under your desk too!
Computer. Clean up your computer desktop by making files where you can store and find items easily. Also, empty your inbox and make a point to keep it as empty as possible – it’s great psychologically to see an empty or near-empty inbox!
Clean. Wipe down your desk, sanitize your computer keyboard, and dust!
Now that you’ve cleaned up your workspace, stand back and admire how great it looks. If you take a few minutes every few days to keep it tidy, it will stay that way!
This information is not intended to be exhaustive nor should any discussion or opinions be construed as professional advice. Should you have any questions or would like to discuss your risk exposure with your family’s insurance, please contact the insurance pros at ARCW Insurance. We are here to help.