As cold weather approaches, it's important to inspect and take action on potential risks regarding Ice Dams. We've provided a helpful bulletin with the following information: What is an Ice Dam? What causes an Ice Dam? How can this damage a home? Prevention and Mitigation Solutions. Our Loss Control section has more winter safety information.
As you gear up for “snowplowing season,” it’s smart to take a good, hard look at your operations. Not only should your equipment be in prime condition and your employees properly trained, but you should also review your practices and procedures. Here you’ll find some important risk management tools to consider in your snow or ice maintenance operations. These tips and tools could help you reduce your loss exposure. You can print the handouts to post or distribute. You can also copy the list, form and log templates and fill them in with your own business information. Click the title to access the guide.
Summer weather can place landscape and agricultural employees in dangerously hot environments. Combining physically demanding work and long days with hot temperatures puts workers at risk for several types of heat stress. The first step toward reducing the risk of heat stress injuries is making sure employees understand the causes of heat stress and recognize the signs of heat stress. Be on high alert for heat stress during hot, humid days. Consider altering the work day to avoid the hottest time period. Wear hats and light clothing. Take regular, shaded rest breaks. Have adequate access to potable water. Do you have a plan in place to help employees cope with heat stress? Click the title for a complete bulletin on heat stress
Camping is a fun way to get family and friends together to enjoy the outdoors. Follow these tips and use the packing checklist to help ensure your camping trip is safe and healthy: get vaccinated; prepare safe and healthy food; practice fire safety; include safe physical activities; protect against carbon monoxide poisoning; avoid wild animals; fight bug bites; protect yourself from the sun; and be prepared. Read the CDC's summer camping checklist for complete details.
Fresh fruit and vegetables. Fairs and festivals. Locally produced goods. These are just a few of the treats of summer, and several good reasons to download Harvest to Hand.™ The popular, free app is available on the App Store for iPhone® users, and for Android™ users on Google Play. This app connects you to farmers markets, local festivals, locally made products, family-friendly farms, local wineries and eateries, seasonal agritourism venues and more. Have an event you’d like to promote? Go to www.HarvestToHand.com and follow the easy instructions to “Enter your Information.” This app is open to everyone*: the main criteria are that the venue, event or farm must be accessible to the general public and feature locally grown or produced products. Don’t have a smart phone? The Harvest to Hand website has all the functionality of the app. Apple, the Apple logo, iPhone and iPod touch are trademarks of Apple Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries. App Store is a service mark of Apple Inc. *Subject to terms of use at www.harvesttohand.com.
Boating season is upon us. Each year hundreds of lives are lost... thousands are injured... and millions of dollars of property damage occurs because of preventable recreational boating accidents on U.S. waterways. The US Coast Guard urges you to boat responsibly. Remember these tips: always wear a life jacket; avoid alcohol; be especially careful on personal watercrafts; children younger than age 13 must wear a Coast Guard approved life jacket while underway; enroll in a boater education class; don’t overload your boat; operate at a safe speed; always have a passenger serve as a lookout in addition to the operator; watch out for low water areas or submerged objects. Click the title for more information on boating safety, courtesy of the USGC.
For nearly 60 years, family-run and small business owners in rural and suburban areas have trusted Farm Family for their insurance needs. We know our quality products have a lot to do with it, but we like to think it’s also because of the special relationship we share with our clients. We’re your business colleagues, neighbors and friends. Every Farm Family client has a story. People like Gerry and John. George, Nancy, Robin and Steve. They were happy to share them. Click on the title above and you can watch them all. Or click on our YouTube station. If their story sounds familiar and you’d like to learn how Farm Family can help protect you and your business, your local agent will be happy to contact you.
Spring weather patterns could increase your risk of flooding. Flood insurance will help you protect your property against spring flooding risks, such as heavy rains, ice jams, rapid snowmelt, and flash flooding. Get the facts, know the risks, and take action to prepare before seasonal events strike. Flood damage is excluded under standard homeowners, renters insurance policies. or in most commercial property insurance policies. Despite efforts to publicize this, many people exposed to the risk of floods still fail to purchase flood insurance. Flood coverage, however, is available in a separate policy from the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). Get the facts, know the risks, and take action to prepare before a severe weather strikes. Typically, there is a 30-day waiting period on new flood insurance policies, so the time to act is now. Click the title for more information on flood insurance.
family ... supportive friends ... good health ... safe home ... successful business ... rewarding work ... quiet moments. Whatever makes your life rich and rewarding, be sure to protect it. At this time of year, we reflect upon and give thanks for our clients who make our business a true pleasure. We're grateful you trust us to protect what means so much to you: your home, farm, business, vehicles, lives and financial future. We take this responsibility seriously. We want to do our level best to make sure your needs are being met. May this season bring you peace, joy and some relief. May you find a moment to reflect with gratitude upon the year that has passed, and anticipate the one ahead.
Holidays are times to enjoy spending with family and friends. During this time, many of us decorate our homes and places of work to cherish the holiday feeling with trees, signs, lights and candles. The improper use or placement of holiday decorations could place you and those around you at higher risk for an accident to happen. Each year fires occurring during the holiday season claim lives, cause injuries and cause millions of dollars in damage. Click the title for simple life-saving steps you can take to ensure a safe and happy holiday, from the USCPSC.
The frost is in the air, and if you have a wood stove, you're probably ready to use it. It's a cozy, comfortable way to heat your home, but it comes with some cautionary advice: have your stove professionally installed; use dry, seasoned wood; and have it professionally inspected every year. Don't burn trash in the stove, don't start a fire with flammable liquid, and don't let the fire burn unattended. Click the title for details.
Ice, snow and wind can have devastating consequences on your home. The time to winterize is before the snow falls. Homeowners should take the following precautions: maintain gutters; trim trees and remove dead branches; check insulation; maintain pipes; keep the house warm; check heating systems; maintain steps and handrails; know your plumbing; check smoke alarms; and plan for being away. Click the title for full details from the Insurance Information Institute.
The National Flood Insurance Program was created to help provide a means for property owners to financially protect themselves in the event of flood damage. The NFIP offers flood insurance to homeowners, renters and business owners if their community participates in the NFIP. If you have purchased flood insurance through the NFIP, contact your agent. The Federal Emergency Management Agency encourages all individuals who have damages or have had to evacuate because of a federally declared disaster to apply for disaster assistance. Click the title above for a link to FEMA.
We're here to help you in the claims and recovery process. If you need to report a claim you can call (800) 948-3276 or use your smartphone by going to www.farmfamily.com and clicking on the Claims button. You'll need your policy number handy if you're using your smartphone. To check on the status of a storm-related claim, call (800) 575-0988 or email sandy@farmfamily.com.
American National Insurance Company (Nasdaq: ANAT) announced third quarter 2012 net income of $59,186,000 ($2.20 per diluted share) compared to net income of $57,650,000 ($2.16 per diluted share) for the same period in 2011. Third quarter after tax operating income, which excludes after tax net realized investment gains, increased to $50,782,000 ($1.89 per diluted share), as compared with $49,408,000 ($1.85 per diluted share) for the same period in 2011. After tax net realized investment gains were $8,404,000 ($0.31 per diluted share) for the third quarter of 2012 as compared with the net realized gains of $8,242,000 ($0.31 per diluted share) for the third quarter of 2011. Click the title for the entire article.
As you gear up for snowplowing season, it’s smart to take a good, hard look at your operations. Not only should your equipment be in prime condition and your employees properly trained, but you should also review your practices and procedures. Here you’ll find some important risk management tools to consider in your snow or ice maintenance operations. These tips and tools could help you reduce your loss exposure. You can print the handouts to post or distribute. You can also copy the list, form and log templates and fill them in with your own business information. Click the title to access the guide.
October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Financial security and access to resources is the number one predictor of whether domestic violence victims will stay in or leave an abusive relationship. And insurance is an important component of financial planning that helps survivors prepare for a better life, according to the Insurance Information Institute. The following strategies are recommended for anyone who is leaving or has left an abusive situation: 1) secure your financial records; 2) know where you stand financially; 3) build a financial safety net; 4) make necessary changes to your insurance plan; 5) maintain good credit; and 6) seek assistance. This last step is critical.Plan for your safety by contacting a local domestic violence program to discuss your options and learn about the community resources you can access for support (i.e. emergency assistance funds, shelter, utility assistance, rent assistance, public benefits and affordable housing as well as legal aid). There are many programs and organizations that can help. To locate a program in your community, contact that National Domestic Violence Hotline: (800) 799-SAFE. Click the title for detailed information from the III or go to http://www.ncadv.org.
Protect your Family from Fire! It's important to have a home fire escape plan that prepares your family to think fast and get out quickly when the smoke alarm sounds. What if your first escape route is blocked by smoke or flames? That's why having two ways out is such a key part of your plan. This year’s theme of Fire Prevention Month,“Have 2 Ways Out!” focuses on the importance of fire escape planning and practice. The National Fire Protection Association provides educational material and tip sheets on the leading causes of home fires, information about protecting your home and families, and the importance of home escape planning. Click the title for details.
Take a safety check of your farm. How safe are your barns and farm buildings? Click the title for a checklist that can help you identify fire dangers today to prevent possible losses tomorrow for: housekeeping, smoking, electrical, refueling and storage of vehicles and hay. Do you have more safety concerns? Contact your Farm Family insurance agent for answers to your questions on protecting your agribusiness.
We're at the height of hurricane season. Two keys to weather safety are to prepare for the risks and to act on those preparations when alerted by emergency officials. First and foremost, have a plan! Know how to contact your family. Put together a supply kit. Know your evacuation routes. Click on the title to take a look at these tips from FEMA on what to do before, during and after a hurricane.
If your student is headed off to college, make sure they've packed their insurance! It’s important to review your insurance coverage and make sure your student knows what’s covered, too. The typical homeowners policy may provide some protection for a college student’s property such as computers and bicycles, and personal liability exposure away from home (usually 10%). However, a student renting an apartment should consider renters insurance. (In either case, it's a good idea to make an inventory of your student's possessions, including the purchase price, and model and serial numbers of major items.)There are also special concerns regarding an auto, such as is the car staying at home (keep the student driver on your policy); or going to college (if the car is registered to you and listed on your policy it’s covered). Students may qualify for certain discounts. And be sure to look at the college’s – and your own – health insurance options for your college-age child. Most health insurance policies now cover dependents until the age of 26. Before your child leaves for school, call your Farm Family agent. We can help ensure you get a passing grade in Insurance 101. Click the title for a video "quiz" from the Insurance Information Institute.
CHROME’s collector car insurance quoting system allows car owners to receive a quick quote online before proceeding to the next step of an application. The no-obligation quote takes into account the vehicle’s condition, where it’s garaged, the purposes for which it’s driven, the year/make/model and the value and requested coverage limits. The information you provide will return the estimated price for a 6-month policy term. You’ll also get a reference number. If you decide to apply for coverage, call 800.CAR.BUFF and our Client Service Center will guide you through the process using your reference number. They can also direct you to apply for coverage through your local Farm Family agent. Click the title for the online quote form.
American National Insurance Company (Nasdaq: ANAT) announced second quarter 2012 net income of $20,506,000 ($0.76 per diluted share) compared to net income of $29,240,000 ($1.09 per diluted share) for the same period in 2011. The reduction in income was the result of a lower level of realized gains on investments. The American National family of companies offers a broad line of products and services, which include life insurance, annuities, health insurance, credit insurance, pension products and property and casualty insurance for personal lines, agribusiness and targeted commercial exposures. The American National family of companies operates in all 50 states and its major insurance subsidiaries include American National Life Insurance Company of Texas, American National Life Insurance Company of New York, American National Property and Casualty Company, Standard Life and Accident Insurance Company, Farm Family Life Insurance Company, Farm Family Casualty Insurance Company and United Farm Family Insurance Company. Click the title for the entire article.
Summer weather can place landscape and agriculture employees -- and any employees who work outdoors -- in dangerously hot environments. They are at risk for heat stroke, heat exhaustion, heat syncope, heat cramps and heat rash. Symptoms can include sweaty hands, blurred vision, dizziness, nausea and decreased reaction time. Besides impacting ill employees, it puts other people and property at risk if the heat-stressed employee still tries to work. Reduce the risk of heat stress injuries by making sure all employees recognize symptoms: be on high alert for heat stress; consider altering the work day to avoid the hottest times; wear hats and light clothing; take regular, shaded breaks; have access to water; and recognize the signs of heat stress.Click the title for more information on heat stress and ways to prevent it.
Whether you're roughing it in a tent or planning a family outing to a national park, camping is a fun way to spend time together. There are many ways to make sure your experience is fun, safe and healthy. Here are some safety tips: get vaccinated; prepare safe and healthy food; practice fire safety; include safe physical activities; protect against carbon monoxide poisoning; avoid wild animals; fight bug bites; prevent termperature-related illnesses; protect yourself from the sun; avoid water-related illnesses and injuries; and be prepared. Click the title for a link to complete guidelines, packing checklists and more from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
There are many great things about summer, but few can match the fun of a family vacation road trip. Families make plans to spend time together – a trip to the shore, the cabin in the mountains, camping at the lake. Whatever the getaway you plan, before you hook up that new boat or camper, or before you put your family or friends into your car, SUV or RV, take the time to review some summer road travel safety tips. Prevention and planning are much easier than dealing with the consequences of a breakdown, or worse yet, a highway crash. Before you hit the road, click the title for details and important links from the National HighwayTraffic Safety Administration to summer safety tips, including a vehicle safety checklist, child safety, on-the-road behaviors to watch for and emergency road kit ideas.
A.M. Best Co. has affirmed the financial strength rating (FSR) of A (Excellent) and issuer credit rating (ICR) of “a+” of American National Insurance Company (ANICO) [NASDAQ:ANAT]. Additionally, A.M. Best has affirmed the FSR of A (Excellent) and ICR of “a” of American National Life Insurance Company of New York (Glenmont, NY) and Farm Family Life Insurance Company (Glenmont, NY), subsidiaries of ANICO. The outlook for all ratings is stable. Concurrently, A.M. Best has affirmed the FSR of A (Excellent) and ICR of “a” of Farm Family Casualty Insurance Company (Farm Family) and United Farm Family Insurance Company. The outlook for the ratings is stable. These companies are domiciled in Glenmont, NY. The members of the ANPAC and Farm Family groups of companies are all property/casualty subsidiaries of ultimate parent ANICO. The ratings also consider the support provided by ANICO, as well as the synergies generated amongst and between the groups and their parent.
According to the National Weather Service, heat is the number one weather-related killer in the US, resulting in hundreds of fatalities each year. Before you head outdoors, keep these safety tips in mind. Slow down. Reduce, eliminate or reschedule strenuous activities until the coolest time of the day. Children, seniors and anyone with health problems should stay in the coolest available place, not necessarily indoors. Dress for summer. Wear lightweight, light-colored clothing to reflect heat and sunlight. Put less fuel on your inner fires. Foods, like meat and other proteins that increase metabolic heat production also increase water loss. Drink plenty of water, non-alcoholic and decaffeinated fluids. Your body needs water to keep cool. During excessive heat periods, spend more time in air-conditioned places. Don't get too much sun. Sunburn reduces your body's ability to dissipate heat. Click the title for more information on the hazards of excessive heat.
June is National Dairy Month and we salute all dairy farmers. Your year-round dedication provides safe, wholesome products to America's tables. The National Dairy Council encourages you to try incorporate just one more serving of low-fat or fat-free dairy into your diet each day. Click the title for more healthy dairy tips.
Boaters enjoy the feel of sun and spray. So it’s tempting to boat without wearing a life jacket, especially on nice days. But modern life jackets are available in a wide variety of shapes, colors and sizes. There’s no excuse not to wear a life jacket on the water. A wearable life jacket for each person must be aboard. These life jackets must be US Coast Guard approved, the proper size for the intended wearer, in good and serviceable condition and properly stowed (readily accessible). Click the title for complete information from teh USCG and a downloadable brochure on choosing a life jacket. You can also follow the "wear it" link to the National Safe Boating Council.