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Baldwin / Welsh & Parker

Monday, 01 June 2020 19:29

Grilling Safety Tips

When the warmer weather hits, there’s nothing better than the smell of food on the grill.

Seven out of every 10 adults in the U.S. have a grill or smoker*, which translates to a lot of tasty meals. But it also means there’s an increased risk of home fires.

In 2014-2018, fire departments went to an annual average of 8,900 home fires involving grills, hibachis or barbecues per year, including 3,900 structure fires and 4,900 outside or unclassified fires.

Download the Grilling Safety Tips PDF by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA)

Thursday, 28 May 2020 23:51

Social Distancing While Biking

Bicycling Safely During Covid-19

We don't know how long social distancing guidelines will continue, but social distancing, even while biking, will most likely continue for the foreseeable future.

According to the Massachusetts Bicycle Coalition (MassBike), "[o]ne of the more confusing parts of our [social distancing] directives is to stay six feet away from others. But how does that really work when you're out riding with others at a steady [15mph]? We've found some interesting studies that have been looking into the aerodynamics of particles when someone is running or biking. Research from one study from Belgium advises that for walking, the distance of people moving in the same direction in one line should be at least [12-15 feet], for running and slow biking it should be [30 feet], and for hard biking at least [60 feet]." Those distances are difficult to maintain in a city or on busy path.

Tuesday, 26 May 2020 14:27

Rules of the Road for Motorists

Sharing the Road with Bicyclists

Now that Governor Charlie Baker has relaxed the stay at home order, more people are likely to take to the roadways on their bicycles. This may not be the best news for those behind the wheel -- the relationship between motorists and bicyclists is often contentious -- but since bicycles are classified as vehicles, bicyclists have the same rights and responsibilities as motorists.

Before your next encounter with a bicyclist, get to know the rules of the road as mandated by the Massachusetts Legislature. (See: Rules of the Road for Bicyclists.) Guidelines from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's are includedas well.

Tuesday, 12 May 2020 23:04

Rules of the Road for Bicyclists

Sharing the Road with Motorists

National Bike Month, sponsored by the League of American Bicyclists and celebrated in communities from coast to coast, was established in 1956 to advocate for a bike friendly America, to showcase the many benefits of bicycling, and to encourage more people to try bicycling. Although this year's events are on hold due to coronavirus, the organization is encouraging people to get on bicycles and ride.

Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker has relaxed the stay at home order, and bicycling is a great way to get out of the house as well as enjoy fresh air and exercise. However, a bicycle is classified as a vehicle, which means bicyclists riding on the roads must obey the same basic traffic laws and regulations that apply to motor vehicle operators.

Before you dust off your bike, fill your tires with air, and map your route, know the rules of the road.

Laws for Bicyclists and Motorists in the Presence of Bicyclists (as amended by Chapter 525 of the Acts of 2008)1

According to Massachusetts Rules of the Road, Chapter 4, "Bicyclists have the right to use all public ways in this state except limited access or express state highways where signs specifically prohibiting bicycles have been posted. When riding on public ways, bicyclists must obey the same basic traffic laws and regulations that apply to motor vehicle operators. The rules for bicycles (including amendments) are listed [below]."

As we are all aware, the Covid-19 virus is now significantly impacting our daily lives and causing concern nationally and globally. The health and safety of our families, friends, employees, and clients is our top priority. As insurance professionals, we recognize that we have a responsibility to our clients, and we need to continue to provide all insurance agency services without interruption or delay.

Our Agency is managing the risk associated with the virus by taking the following steps: Effective March 17th, many employees of Baldwin, Welsh & Parker Insurance Agencies will be working remotely until further notice. We will remain fully operational, but are discouraging all visitation to our offices except for emergencies. Please call or email us for any insurance need you may have. In addition, we encourage you to visit our website to access insurance company claim and billing services.

On behalf of all of us at Baldwin, Welsh & Parker Insurance Agencies, we wish you all good health, and we know you share our confidence that we will demonstrate resolve andnresiliencenas we face the Covid-19 challenge before us.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us.

Sincerely,

David C. D’Orlando                         Steven E. Joyce
President                                           Vice President

Tuesday, 10 March 2020 14:39

What is Umbrella Insurance?

What is Umbrella Insurance?

Umbrella insurance provides excess liability insurance coverage that goes beyond the limits of the your homeowners or auto insurance policies. It offers additional protection in the event that you are sued for property damage or injuries. It also protects against libel, vandalism, and slander. The following explains how umbrella insurance works.

Is umbrella insurance necessary?

It’s important to first understand what is covered by standard homeowners and auto policies as well as the potential benefits of umbrella policy. The following may help you decide if umbrella insurance is appropriate for you.

Tuesday, 21 January 2020 20:50

Are Your Valuables Covered? Maybe Not.

Updated January 31, 2020 at 4:15 p.m.

Protect Your Most Valuable Belongings

If you own your home (or have a renters policy), you might be surprised to learn that your standard homeowner's insurance policy doesn't cover the total loss of your most expensive possessions. Most homeowners' policies offer limited coverage for personal items such as jewelry, musical instruments, sporting equipment, cameras, and computers.

 

Standard Homeowners Insurance Does Not Fully Cover Expensive Jewelry & Valuable Items

Standard homeowners and renters insurance policies include coverage for personal possessions such as jewelry, but many policies limit the dollar amount for theft of valuable items. When jewelry is lost or damaged due to theft or fire, it may not be covered — many times it's excluded. Homeowners' policies generally have a $1,000 or $1,500 maximum coverage amount for jewelry loss due to theft. Therefore, when jewelry valued at $3,000 is stolen from your home and you only have a $1,000 limit, you’d only receive $1,000 of the $3000 needed to replace those items.

Tuesday, 07 January 2020 20:22

Avoiding Disaster at the Gym

Many people choose to exercise at workout facilities such as gyms, recreation centers, and health clubs. In 2016, the total number of gym memberships in the U.S. was 57.25 million in over 36,000 facilities. While the increased physical activity is a good thing, people often overlook the dangers found at such facilities. In fact, for many people, the gym may be the most dangerous environment they visit on a regular basis. Many people performing exertive movements in close proximity using heavy, free-moving equipment can be a recipe for disaster. To ensure you only end up sore from your workout, here are some gym safety tips to follow.

You may think that a homeowners insurance policy provides adequate coverage for all your valuables, but policies may provide limited or no coverage for certain items — including generally expensive items — that are damaged or stolen.

For example, many homeowners policies generally have a $1,000 or $1,500 coverage amount for jewelry if the loss is due to theft. Such limits are in place to help keep homeowners policies affordable. However, if jewelry valued at $2,000 is stolen from your home and you have a $1,000 policy limit, you can only receive $1,000 from your insurer to replace the missing items.

That is when an insurance endorsement (sometimes called a rider) can provide increased coverage for your possessions. For an additional premium, this coverage can help protect you from the loss of high-end valuables such as jewelry, furs, antiques, artwork and collectibles.

Here are five tips that may help you decide whether you need valuable items coverage.

Governor Baker Signs Legislation Requiring Hands-Free Use of Electronic Devices While Driving

If you are accustomed to having a conversation or checking navigation while using your handheld phone it's time to stop. Massachusetts hands-free driving law now prohibits drivers from holding a phone for any reason, other than in an emergency. (Texting while driving has been banned for nearly a decade. Calls in hands-free mode are allowed.)

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