Recent Data Shows Seniors Better Drivers Than Teens

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Older peoples don’t always get the credit they deserve for their safe driving habits. Statistics prove senior drivers are better drivers than teens.

There’s no way around it. Americans love their cars and love to drive. In fact, more than 75 percent of adults have a driver’s license. This includes 40 million who are 65 and older, and senior drivers are reluctant to stop driving.

Decades of statistics show crash rates are highest for ages 16 to 19, not 65 and over.

So, is there a misconception out there about senior drivers being a danger driving a vehicle?

Current research proves the assumption that older people are not a danger behind the wheel. Even at 85, senior drivers crash less often, per mile, than teens.

Older adults simply don’t get enough credit for their safe driving habits. They are more likely to use seat belts and follow speed limits. They are less likely to drive at night or while intoxicated. And they are certainly less likely to text while they drive. Many seniors limit their driving at night, on highways, or during rush hour.

Public suspicion of older drivers is not fact based, but rather based on a nonclinical factor called ‘ageism’. In a publication by the American Geriatrics Society and published by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration called, “The Clinician’s Guide to Assessing and Counseling Older Drivers”,the evidence-based book tells the story.

While some 32 states impose special registration burdens based on age, the effectiveness appears to be limited. Two policies that have reduced fatality rates considerably for senior drivers are: in-person renewals and additional vision tests. These policies identify drivers with functional deficits and refer them to further screening which might deny license renewal. For seniors who think they may not pass the screening, the option is to simply not renew and discontinue driving.

For seniors who choose to continue to drive, finding the best auto insurance rates is important. Ask your independent insurance agent about the best choice. There are many insurance companies which offer discounts to mature drivers, as well as those who use drive tracking apps, take defensive driving courses, and have up-to-date safety features on their vehicles. For people who have recently retired and no longer commute to and from work every day, there may also may also be a discount for driving less.

What Insurance Coverage Do I Need for My Brewery?

Friday, February 22, 2019

Brewery owners know the importance of comprehensive insurance coverage to protect and grow their Brewery business. If you’re just getting started or want to find out some details before you move forward, this should help.

The brewery business has grown extensively across the U.S. in the last 10 years. If you’re a brewer, you probably know this, but if you’re just getting started or want to find out some details before you move forward, this should help.

How you protect your brewery business is an important part of getting started. Here are some details about insuring your business and why it’s vital to have the right brewery insurance coverage.

Property and General Liability Coverage. Do you provide tours through your brewery or serve food items for purchase? If you have a craft brewery, your facilities are likely in an industrial-type building where there are chemicals, hot surfaces, and machinery that can contribute to accidents. To cover your business risks, consider these things:

  1. mark the walking paths and tasting/tour areas,
  2. guests should stay several feet away from equipment,
  3. safety glasses should be provided for tours,
  4. closed toe footwear is a smart request, and
  5. use properly-trained employees who conduct the tours.

Equipment Coverage. Equipment is usually one of the largest expenses in running a brewery. If equipment is stolen, most standard policies will cover it. Same with a breakdown, but being without your equipment could slow operations and revenue. Check with your independent insurance agent to be sure you have a well-designed brewery insurance policy that will keep business running.

Mobility. Transporting products, often in rental vehicles is a common practice among breweries, but it can also be an insurance gap. Ask about endorsements that can be added to your business policy to cover this gap.

Special Events. A special events coverage is recommended if you participate in trade shows, festival and such off-premises events.

Liquor Liability. Cover yourself for the risk of intoxicated patrons who can become a safety concern and a liability. Your trained staff should be able to easily identify someone in such a state. Also enforce an ID checking procedure and have an alternative way to see that patrons leave safely in case they cannot drive.

Product Liability. If you’re considering adding food service to your brewery be sure to consider such things as verifying the quality of raw ingredients, ensuring proper storage and temperature control, and smart food safety training for all brewing and kitchen staff.

Food Trucks. Food trucks are a popular trend, but can be a liability when serving patrons on your premises. Be sure the vendors provide certificates of insurance to prove they have a general liability policy including premises, operations, products, and completed operations and auto liability coverage. If they operate on your premises on a regular basis and your brewery provides utilities to them (power, water, waste disposal), you should request to be added to their general liability policy as additional insured. Your general liability insurance will only cover third party damages if those were your brewery’s fault such as a patron tripping and falling on your parking lot.

Insuring your brewery is not difficult if you have the right insurance agent who knows answers to your questions. Have a sit-down with your local independent insurance agent first and you can be confident of your coverage.

 

Why Auto Insurance Rates Go Up

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Auto Insurance is based on risk and reward. Your insurance company must balance the risk-to-reward ratio to be a profitable business. But there are factors which influence how and if that happens and how you drive is a big one.

Auto Insurance is based on risk and reward. Your insurance company must balance the risk-to-reward ratio to be a profitable business. But there are factors which influence how and if that happens and how you drive is a big one.

If your driving habits change (for the worse), the insurance company may need to raise your insurance rates to stay in business. In other words, a car crash, a speeding ticket, or some such altercation you experience, will likely cause your rates to go up. Fortunately, most insurance companies will remove accident claims and minor violations from your record after a designated length of time.

Fender benders are one thing, but offenses such as leaving the scene of an accident or repeated DWI violations, means you will be placed in a high-risk pool which could cost many times more than normal premiums. And once you are earmarked with such violations, insurance companies will be wary of your driving record going forward.

Economic conditions can also affect rising insurance rates and when sluggish investments occur, businesses often must increase their rates. And, there are conditions you and I have no control over that cause insurance rates to go up, such as state auto insurance laws.

As an individual, you can have an impact on your insurance rates by driving safer and avoiding risky situations when you’re behind the wheel. Here are some interesting statistics for Winkler County that shuld encourage everyone to drive more defensively and keep rates and accidents down.

ODA

               All Crashes

Counties

2016

2017

2018

Andrews

238

243

388

Crane

61

80

96

Ector

2691

3477

5170

Loving

18

66

103

Martin

158

256

267

Midland

3940

4656

5587

Pecos

437

429

379

Reeves

387

727

922

Terrell

15

20

34

Upton

49

47

59

Ward

206

403

577

Winkler

97

187

313

TOTAL

8287

10591

13895

 

From 2016 to 2018, total crashes in the Odessa District were up 67% and the fatalities were up 97%. In addition, Commercial Motor Vehicle crashes in the Odessa District during that same time-frame were up 160% and CMV related fatalities were up 122%. Let us ALL be a defensive driver in 2019 and make these numbers go down.

 

Storm Season is Ahead: Are You Prepared if Bad Weather Holds You Hostage in Your Vehicle?

Thursday, February 7, 2019

How prepared are you if you get stuck in your car due to bad weather? Here are a few tips that may help save your life!

With storm season looming you know that means any kind of weather is possible, especially in Texas. It could be torrential rain, fog, icy roads, tornado, hail, and yes, even snow.

The question is: “How prepared are you if you get stuck in your car due to bad weather?”

If you’re caught in a tornado in a car, your only slightly safer. If you can see the tornado in the distance you might be able to drive out of its path by moving at right angles to the tornado. Most importantly, seek shelter in a sturdy building or underground if possible.

What about torrential rains that prohibit good visibility? First, pull over preferably under an overpass or shelter of some kind; just stop driving until it lets up. Keep your radio tuned to weather or check your iPhone. Let somebody, friend or family, know where and how you are.

Sometimes fog can be so thick that it’s safer to pull over and stop the car rather than blindly creeping along. If so, let someone know where you are. If you can’t reach friend or family, contact the local police or fire station.

The smartest thing you can do in a hail storm is take shelter under a bridge, overpass, gas station, anywhere that protects you and your vehicle from bombardment.

Snow and ice usually give you fair warning to ‘stay home’ and ‘don’t get on the road’ if you don’t have to. But, if you must travel in snow, make sure your car has snow chains. Driving on ice is another matter and should be avoided; however, if you must drive on ice, drive slowly and leave plenty of space between you and the car in front of you. If you must pull over, keep the car running for warmth and call someone to come help.

No matter what the weather issue, be prepared by keeping a survival kit in your car. Include plenty of bottled water, a couple of flashlights with extra batteries, packaged snacks, two or three warm blankets, a rain poncho (in case you need to get out of the car temporarily during a downpour), aspirin or Tylenol, band-aids, antiseptic for minor cuts, and a fix-a-flat is not a bad idea. And don’t forget your cell phone charger.

Other handy carry-alongs for your car include a portable car battery charger; plug-in portable heat devices; and a windshield ice scraper with a can of de-icer.

It’s easier to survive unexpected weather if you take a little time in advance to be prepared. Of course, making sure your car insurance is up to date and in force goes without saying. Keep your insurance agent’s numberhandy in case you need to call.

Can Your Super Bowl Party be an Insurance Liability?

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Few people want to think about a guest getting food poisoning at their Super Bowl Party, or somebody crashing into their new glass coffee table, however, these things can and do happen. This begs the question: Do you have insurance liability to cover such things?

Super Bowl Sunday is centered around football, yes, but it’s also about friendly get-togethers with friends and family, theme-centric parties, good food and drink, and generally, a rowdy good time.

Few people want to think about a guest getting food poisoning at their Super Bowl Party, or somebody crashing into their new glass coffee table. However, these things can and do happen, which begs the question: Do you have insurance liability to cover such things?

If you have homeowner’s insurance, you’re probably in good shape, but it’s a good idea to check with your independent insurance agent just in case you need something you need.

Meantime, here are a few tips that can, hopefully, prevent such calamities at your Super Bowl soirée: 

  • Hot food should be kept hot and cold food cold.
  • Keep hot foods at or warmer than 140 °F.
  • For cold food to remain at a safe a temperature at or below 40°F must be kept.
  • If perishable foods are left out longer than two hours, discard them and replace with fresh servings.

There may be exclusions in your homeowner’s policy relating to food poisoning, so remember to speak with your agent before the party. Usually, party food that makes a guest ill is covered in your homeowner’s policy and would cover medical bills and possibly any resulting lawsuits. Again, check the details of your policy.

And, what about your broken glass table?

Personal property coverage is part of your homeowner’s policy that would cover the broken glass table that your enthusiastic guest accidentally crashed into. A good proactive idea, however, is to simply remove breakable, valuable furniture and items from the viewing area and replace them with portable tables and TV trays.  

Your Super Bowl Sunday party is centered around fun and good times; so, a little preparedness before the party will ensure more fun and fewer mishaps for everyone.

Good luck to your favored team!

The Case for Cyber Insurance

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Although many people think cyberattacks happen mainly in large enterprises, the fact is small businesses are increasingly becoming targets.

Think about all the various digital devices that now connect to business networks. These devices, in addition to the internet, amplify opportunities for people to access your company’s assets. The worst year ever for cyber attacks was 2017. Although many people think cyberattacks happen mainly in large enterprises, the fact is small businesses are increasingly becoming targets for cyberattacks. Whether your business is small or large, if it stores and maintains customer information. collects online payments, or uses the cloud, you should consider adding cyber insurance to your budget.

What is Cyber Insurance?

Sometimes referred to as cyber risk insurance or cyber liability insurance coverage (CLIC), a cyber insurance policy helps mitigate risk by lessening costs involved with recovery after a security breach. About one-third of U.S. companies currently purchase some type of cyber insurance.

Digital devices and the internet are gateways to cyberattacks, which can cause moderate to extreme losses for companies, large, medium, or small. Your business hopefully has a risk management plan, in which decisions are made to decide which risks to avoid, accept, control or transfer. When you transfer risk, that is where cyber insurance steps in.

Cyber insurance is still evolving and cyber risks change often. Sometimes an organization does not report the full impact of a breach to avoid negative publicity and damage its reputation. That can mean underwriters have less data on which to determine the financial impact of  cyberattacks.

The cost of cyber insurance coverage is usually based on a company’s industry, the type of services provided, data risks and exposures, security posture, policies and annual gross revenue.

A good first step is to create a cyber risk profile for your company, then create a list of expenses you want to have covered in the event of an incident. Then, you can speak with your independent insurance agent to get answers about cyber insurance and feel confident you will be given solid advice to make the smartest decision.

7 Things to Know When Purchasing Homeowner’s Insurance

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Everyone needs protection against liability for accidents that could injure other people or damage their property. To get the best home insurance rates and coverage, know what to look for when shopping using these valuable tips.

Whether you own a home or rent, you need home insurance to protect your personal property. Everyone needs protection against liability for accidents that could injure other people or damage their property. To get the best rates and coverage, know what to look for when shopping using these valuable tips.

Amount of Coverage You Need
If a disaster strikes, you want to have the best possible coverage. It means you will pay less out of pocket if you do. Your lender may designate the amount of coverage you need based on the mortgage terms. It’s important to know that the amount of coverage you buy for your house, contents and personal property will affect the final amount of your house payment.

Select the Right Deductible
Make sure when choosing your deductible that you’re comfortable paying that amount if you make a claim. You pay a deductible on each claim you make and it applies to coverage on your house and personal property. The lowest deductible most insurance companies will do is 1 percent; some companies cap it at 2 to 5 percent. A few companies will do a split deductible 1 percent (and up) Wind and Hail and $1,000 on all other. Higher deductibles may be available at a reduced price. That’s a question for your independent insurance agent.

Which is Best, Replacement Cost or Actual Cash Value?
There are two options when insuring your home and belongings -- replacement cost or actual cash value. Replacement cost is the cost to replace or rebuild your home or repair damages with materials of similar kind and quality, without deducting for depreciation. It is important to insure your home for at least 80 percent of its replacement value. Actual cash value is the dollar amount it would cost to repair or replace damage to your home after depreciation.

Choose Your Insurance Company Wisely
You’re not required to buy insurance from the company your lender recommends. To find out what different insurers charge for identical products and services, speak with your independent insurance agent, or consult with your state insurance department or consumer publications.

Ask Your Independent Agent About Discounts
Discounts are available in some states for things such as bundling your home and car with the same company, installing deadbolt locks or alarm systems or replacing the roof. Your independent agent will know.

Basic Available Coverages
Whether you own or rent, there are different packages of home insurance offered to protect your home and possessions. Each package protects against a specified number of events that cause damage to property. Three examples are fire, windstorm and theft. In addition, each package policy usually contains four additional types of coverage: property damage, additional living expenses, personal liability and medical payment.

Understand Your Policy and Review It Annually

Remember, a home insurance policy is a legal contract. Your rights and responsibilities as well as those of the insurance company should be clearly stated. When you purchase home insurance and receive your policy, read it carefully to make sure you understand the language and contents.

Keep your policy in a safe place and know the name of your insurer. If you make changes to your home such as an addition an additional room, new insulation or remodeling, discuss this with your independent agent. These changes add value to your home and may increase replacement cost.

We at Killebrew Insurance are available to assist you in your insurance questions. Give us a call today!

May the New Year Bring Health, Peace, and Prosperity!

Friday, December 21, 2018

As 2018 comes to an end, we want to take this opportunity to wish all our wonderful customers, friends, and partners the very finest New Year to come.

As 2018 comes to an end, we want to take this opportunity to wish all our wonderful customers, friends, and partners the very finest New Year to come.

We want to convey a heartfelt “Thank You” for your business, loyalty, and friendship. It’s a privilege to serve the people of The Permian Basin, who embody a special friendliness and warmth you don’t find everywhere.

As a family-owned business, we respect the importance of family and community and hope that we can continue to help you with all your insurance needs, large or small.

Drop by and say hello anytime. We enjoy seeing you and look forward to a bright New Year filled with opportunities that benefit everyone.

Happy New Year!
James Killebrew and the Killebrew Insurance Team

How to Best Insure Those High-End, Expensive Holiday Gifts

Friday, December 21, 2018

Christmas is almost here, and you may be filled with excitement about surprising your loved one with that expensive Christmas gift. In all the excitement, don’t forget about the importance of insuring it.

Christmas is almost here, and you may be filled with excitement about surprising your loved one with that expensive Christmas gift. In all the excitement, don’t forget about the importance of insuring it. Whether the gift will sit in the garage, hang on the wall, or someone will live in it, here’s how to cover your big gift.

Some gifts you can insure by making a phone call to your agent or insurance company. Others - such as cars or vacations, condos, fine art, high-end electronics - require your loved one to buy an insurance policy in his or her own name.

Existing insurance may be enough

If your gift is for someone who lives with you, the easiest way to insure it may be to add it to your homeowner’s insurance or renter’s coverage. Standard policies pay out if belongings in your home are damaged or stolen, but coverage for valuables - such as furs, art and jewelry - typically have a limit. That’s after any deductible.

You can expand your current policy with a “scheduled” rider, floater or endorsement. Scheduling items onto your policy insures them based on cost or current value. For this reason, you’ll likely need a bill of sale or certified appraisal to cover the gift.

Items that gain value need special coverage

For gifts such as fine art, antiques, or heirlooms, all of which may gain value, a rider that pays the increased value is a good investment in case the gift is damaged or stolen.

An appraisal may be needed every one to three years, if you have this kind of policy. Your insurance agent can probably suggest an appraiser.

A stand-alone policy

Your independent insurance agent may offer more policy options than large insurers, such as coverage for losing the gift; but don’t miss the convenience and savings of bundling with one insurer.

Here are some cases where you may want a stand-alone policy for a gift, rather than using home insurance:

  • The person getting the gift doesn’t live with you, and you can’t add them to your home insurance
  • You or the recipient don’t have homeowner’s or renter’s insurance
  • If the gift is used for work, it would be excluded from many home policies
  • A different type of policy is required for the gift, such as car or travel insurance

Vehicles as a gift

If your gift includes four wheels and a gigantic bow tied around it, the person driving it will need his or her own insurance. And you will need coverage for it before you drive it off the sales lot.

If you share an auto insurance policy with the gift recipient, just add the car to your shared policy and transfer the title after the surprise.

If the lucky gifted person does not live with you, he or she will have to insure it independently. You might consider surprising your loved one at the dealership so the car is properly titled and insured from the start.

No matter what your gift is, talking with your independent insurance agent before you decide can help. You can choose better coverage options with a little professional guidance.

Safety First Won’t Spoil the Fun at Your Business Holiday Gathering

Thursday, December 13, 2018

As the holidays approach, most businesses are planning office parties, pot luck lunches, and closing shop for a few days of downtime. It’s a joyous fun time of the year, but it’s also the time when burglaries, thefts, and accidents increase.

As the holidays approach, most businesses are planning office parties, pot luck lunches, and closing shop for a few days of downtime. It’s a joyous fun time of the year when friends and family get together. But it’s also the time when burglaries, thefts, and accidents increase.

Most businesses realize the value of an alarm system and have one in place year round. But there are also a few safety tips to bear in mind for your business and your employees -- especially during holiday merrymaking.

Make sure your employees fully understand the rules that go along with the holiday office party. If you serve alcohol, be sure to enforce the ‘don’t drink and drive’ policy. Paying for an employee’s taxi ride home could be a lot less expensive than a car crash or accident when leaving the party.

If party decorations are in order, avoid candles and use battery-operated lights. It’s also a good idea to have someone monitor the in/out doors, to keep a keen eye on who’s coming and going.

Minimize access to valuable hardware or software. If you’re a retail business and have cash in registers, remove it or lock up registers along with expensive electronics.

If your industrious employees are working late, make sure they work in pairs. The buddy system is always safer, especially when leaving through the parking garage or street.

If you have a security system that is operational, be sure to advise them of your events and ask for any special monitoring as people come and go. Obviously, someone in charge will be responsible for setting the security system when everyone is gone.

If you do not have a security system for your business, you should consider having one installed. Your property insurance rates can be considerably lower with a security system, saving you up to 20 percent on rates. Not to mention, your employees will feel much safer, too.

And as always, talk with your independent insurance agent and find out how much they can save you on your business insurance.

Killebrew Blog View Blog

Recent Data Shows Seniors Better Drivers Than Teens

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Older peoples don’t always get the credit they deserve for their safe driving habits. Statistics prove senior drivers are better drivers than teens.

What Insurance Coverage Do I Need for My Brewery?

Friday, February 22, 2019

Brewery owners know the importance of comprehensive insurance coverage to protect and grow their Brewery business. If you’re just getting started or want to find out some details before you move forward, this should help.

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