Extension cords make work tasks easier and more convenient. However, they can also pose serious burn, shock and tripping hazards if you do not use them properly.
Prior to use, read the label describing the usage, size and wattage ratings. The gauge rating on the extension cord is indicated by a number corresponding to electrical items that you can plug into the cord. The rule of thumb is, the smaller the gauge number, the larger the power wattage of the electrical item.
To prevent unnecessary extension cord-related injuries on the job, follow these safety tips:
Using an extension cord incorrectly is a recipe for disaster. Make sure you’re not using one as permanent wiring, daisy chaining (plugging one extension cord into another and another, etc.), or using one surge protector or power strip to power another.
FIRE PREVENTION: It starts with you
The leading causes of workplace fires are electrical failures, the misuse of electrical equipment, friction, open flames and smoking. That’s why we’re counting on you to reduce the risk of fire by practicing the following fire prevention tips:
Be accountable…immediately notify a supervisor if you notice a potential fire hazard.
Cyber security researchers recently announced the discovery of two major security flaws that could allow hackers to bypass regular security measures and obtain normally inaccessible data. The flaws, referred to as Meltdown and Spectre, are both caused by design flaws found in nearly all modern processors. These vulnerabilities can be exploited to access all of the data found in personal computers, servers, cloud computing services and mobile devices.
Because Meltdown and Spectre are both caused by design flaws, experts believe that they will be harder to fix than traditional security exploits. Additionally, software patches that have already been released to help address the vulnerabilities can cause computer systems to slow down significantly, which may impact their ability to perform regular tasks.
Researchers believe that Meltdown and Spectre may be limited to processors manufactured by different companies, but also warn that the design flaws that contribute to Meltdown and Spectre have been present for years. Here are some key details about each flaw:
reported them to major hardware and software companies so work on security fixes could begin without alerting hackers. As a result, services and applications offered by companies like Microsoft, Google, Apple and Amazon have already been updated to help defend against the flaws. However, you shouldn’t rely solely on a software patch to protect against these vulnerabilities. Here are some steps you can take to protect your computer systems and devices from Meltdown and Spectre:
DID YOU KNOW
According to Forbes Magazine, a person with no debt and $10 in his or her pocket has more wealth than 25 percent of Americans.
Planning for a Future of Financial Stability
Obtaining the peace of mind financial stability brings starts with reviewing your current financial resources. This is important because your financial resources affect not only your ability to reach your goals, but your ability to protect those goals from potential financial crises. These are the resources you will draw on to meet various life events. Start by calculating your net worth—this isn’t as difficult as it might sound. Your net worth is simply the total value of what you own: your assets, minus what you owe (your liabilities). It’s a snapshot of your financial health.
First, add up the approximate value of all of your assets. This includes personal possessions, vehicles, homes, checking and savings accounts, and the cash value (not the death benefits) of any life insurance policies you may have. Include the current value of investments, such as stocks, real estate, certificates of deposit, retirement accounts, IRAs and the current value of any pensions you have.
Now add up your liabilities: the remaining mortgage on your home, credit card debt, student and personal loans taxes due on the profits of your investments if you cashed them in and any other outstanding bills. Subtract your liabilities from your assets. Do you have more assets than liabilities? Or the other way around? If so, don’t beat yourself up. According to Forbes Magazine, a person with no debt and $10 in his or her pocket has more wealth than 25 percent of Americans.
Your aim is to create a positive net worth, and you want it to grow each year. Your net worth is part of what you will draw on to pay for financial goals and your retirement. A strong net worth also will help you through financial crises. Review your net worth annually as a good way to monitor your financial health. Websites like Mint.com help you keep track of your income, expenses and net worth on a daily basis.
Identify other financial resources. You may have other financial resources that aren’t included in your net worth but that can help you through tough times. These include the death benefits of your life insurance policies, Social Security survivor’s benefits, health care coverage, disability insurance, liability insurance, and auto and home insurance. Although you may have to pay for some of these resources, they offer financial protection in case of illness, accidents or other catastrophes.
Healthy Portion Sizes
For a general idea of the amount of food you should be consuming, use the following recommendations:
Making Time for Fitness
The Importance of Knowing Your Numbers
Employees that work outside in the winter months are at risk of serious health problems, including hypothermia, frostbite, dehydration and muscle injuries. What’s more, frigid temperatures can also cause additional pain for those who suffer from arthritis and rheumatism.
Common symptoms of cold-related illnesses and injuries include uncontrollable shivering, slurred speech, clumsy movements, fatigue, confusion, white or grayish skin, skin that feels waxy and numbness.
To reduce the risk of cold-induced injuries, consider doing the following:
It’s important to note that many people do not notice they are suffering from cold-related illnesses because their tissue is numb. Therefore, it is wise for employees to check on each other periodically when working outdoors in the cold.
If employees experience any symptoms of cold-related illnesses and injuries, they should get indoors, alert their supervisor and call for medical attention if symptoms do not subside.
When it comes to money matters, no one likes to be surprised by the feeling that they’ve been shortchanged. That’s why it’s important that you understand how your insurance policy responds to potential personal property losses.
When insuring your personal possessions on your homeowners or renters insurance policy, you have one of two coverage options: insuring for your property’s actual cash value or the cost to replace it. Find out the difference and why we recommend replacement cost coverage.
Replacement Cost Coverage
When insuring your possessions on your homeowners or rental insurance policy, opting for replacement cost coverage provides you the best reimbursement option. Why? With replacement cost coverage, you collect the full cost to replace the item, less your deductible. Here’s an example to illustrate the benefit of replacement cost coverage:
The furniture you bought a few years ago for $650 is now worth only $100, but today costs $900 to replace. With replacement cost coverage, you would collect $900 to replace the furniture, minus your deductible. With actual cash value, you would get reimbursed $100, minus your deductible. Remember, the age and type of possession impacts the depreciated amount, which can be pennies on the dollar.
While your personal property is covered under your homeowners or renters insurance, policy limits do apply. To insure your valuable items—such as jewelry, fine art or antiques—consider scheduling these high-value items on an endorsement or policy floater.
For all endorsed items, an appraisal or sales receipt is typically required. This will help ensure that, in the event of a covered loss, the amount of insurance is enough to cover the replacement, repair or cash payment of the item.
If you haven’t documented your possessions on a home inventory list, it may be hard to replace them.
While your homeowners or rental insurance policy will cover you in the event of a burglary or fire, up to the policy’s limits, you’ll still need a thorough inventory list, including photos or video. With insurance fraud on the rise, it’s important to have a home inventory list and to keep the information up to date. Storing this information in a safe place is highly recommended.
Workplace-sponsored holiday parties present a host of liabilities for organizations each year. Factors like choice of venue and employees’ religious affiliations can create friction even before alcohol is thrown into the mix. Below are some best practices for hosting a successful holiday party.
1. Update Your Employee Handbook
Prior to the event, make sure your employee handbook is up to date regarding applicable holiday party topics, including the following:
2. Make it Optional
Generally, if a workplace function is mandatory, employees must be compensated for their time. Depending on the number of employees, enforcing and tracking attendance may be difficult. With this in mind, it can simply be easier to make the party optional.
3. Keep it Festive
There are many arguments concerning the appropriateness of observing one holiday over another. For instance, some workplaces may favor a “Christmas party” over a more inclusive celebration. However, focusing on the holiday spirit—and avoiding religious celebrations—can help avoid unwanted employee divisions or discrimination suits.
4. Control or Limit Alcohol
Many organizations offer alcohol at holiday parties, but that comes with additional risks. Consider some of the following methods to help control employee consumption:
5. Designate a Monitor
If you decide to offer alcohol, make sure there is a company-designated person to flag inappropriate behavior and ensure everyone leaves the party safely.
Focusing on the holiday spirit—and avoiding religious celebrations—can help avoid unwanted employee divisions or discrimination suits.
While choosing insurance may not be as romantic as deciding where to go on your honeymoon, it is one of the most important things you can do as newlyweds. Although most couples are aware of the need to readdress their insurance needs when they get married, there is a disconnect between that awareness and whether they take action.
Use the considerations in this article as a way to start a discussion about your insurance needs. TWFG Insurance - Kelly Lee LLC can then help you narrow down your options.
If you and your spouse have separate auto insurance policies, it may be wise to combine them. Get quotes from each of your carriers, and shop around to see if any others offer
Keep in mind that it may not always make sense to bundle your car insurance policies. If your spouse has a poor driving record, you may end up paying more by bundling. Nonetheless, you may still qualify for a discount just for being married. Insurers typically offer discounted rates to people just for being married, because of the assumption that married people drive safer.
Young people are more likely to become disabled than die prematurely. In fact, more than half of Americans identified as disabled are in their working years—between ages 18 and 64— according to the Council for Disability Awareness.
Disability insurance is historically inexpensive, and can pay you between 50-70 percent of your regular monthly income if an accident, illness or injury prevents you from being able to work. If your employer doesn’t offer disability insurance, you can purchase it on your own. This coverage can be critical for you and your loved ones.
Don’t make the mistake of declining health insurance, even if you and your spouse are healthy. An illness or emergency can cause newlyweds financial hardship that could have been prevented with health insurance.
If you and your spouse both have health insurance through your employers, you can maintain separate plans, but it may be cheaper to be on the same plan. Doing so can help you reach your annual deductible more quickly.
Certain life events, such as marriage, allow you to join your spouse’s plan as long as it is within the required time frame. If you decide to share a plan, compare both employers’ coverage and costs to determine which plan best fits your health needs and finances.
Be sure to consider each plan’s deductibles, coinsurance, copayments, coverage limits, prescription coverage and choice of health care providers. Remember that if you have a preferred doctor, you’ll want to make sure he or she is in your network.
Don’t panic if employer-sponsored health insurance is not an option for you. Coverage is available to everyone through the Affordable
Newlyweds who both have jobs and are not yet dependent on their spouse’s income may not see the need for life insurance. However, as they build their lives together, that dependency grows. If you’re young and healthy, you can benefit from getting life insurance early in your marriage, since you can typically lock in better rates than if you were older. Remember that the older you get, the higher the rates, so don’t put it off for too long.
While life insurance is less urgent for young couples who are both working and don’t have children, it is important for newlyweds with only one working spouse or those who have children from a previous marriage to purchase life insurance early in their marriage.
If you already had life insurance prior to tying the knot, don’t forget to add your new spouse as a beneficiary.
Care Act. Visit www.HealthCare.gov to review and select a plan through the health insurance marketplace, either during open enrollment or within 60 days of getting married.
If you rent your living space, you should consider renters insurance to cover the value of your possessions. If you already have renters insurance, don’t forget that you have more to lose now that you have combined belongings, such as furniture, electronics and jewelry. Consider increasing your limits on personal property coverage, which pays to replace or repair items that are stolen or damaged.
Homeowners insurance is similar to renters insurance, but it covers more than just your possessions. It also covers your home in case of fire, theft or other perils. Both renters insurance and homeowners insurance also provide liability coverage.
Shop Around for Coverage
Addressing your insurance needs early provides a solid foundation for your marriage. Review your financial situation and objectives with your spouse, and contact TWFG Insurance - Kelly Lee LLC to help you find sufficient coverage within your budget.
Did you know?
Holiday Safety: Decorating
While decorating helps add to the beauty of the holidays, it also brings an increased risk of fire hazards in the home. The following decorating tips will help you celebrate safely during the holiday season.
Christmas Tree Safety
Do your part to ride safely. 22 percent of riders killed in crashes are not licensed at all or are improperly licensed to operate a motorcycle.
When you’re controlling this much force, it’s essential that you have the licensing and training to be in complete control of your motorcycle.