Summer is near and with that comes the increased use of swimming pools. Before you jump in, make sure the pool you’re using is safe and that there are rules in place. The National Safety Council reports that 600 children and adults drown annually in swimming pools; of those, half in home pools. In addition, more than 2,000 children in that age group are treated in hospital emergency rooms for submersion injuries.


Make a splash in swimming pool safety by following these 11 tips to protect your loved ones:


  1. An adult who is a strong swimmer should watch children at all times
    • Infant and toddler — adult in the water holding the child
    • Older child — adult in the water paying constant attention and avoiding distractions like talking on the phone, texting, socializing or drinking
    • Never allow a child to swim alone, regardless of their swimming ability

2. Install a fence that completely surrounds the pool area to prevent children from entering on their own; fences should be climb-resistant, at least four feet high and be self-closing/self-latching

3. Install an alarm on the door of your house leading to the pool and the pool gate itself to alert adults if someone is entering the pool

4. Become CPR certified (check your local hospital for courses) and post instructions near the pool

5. Always keep a stocked first-aid kit nearby

6. Expose your children to water safety and swim lessons at a very young age (check your local recreation department, YMCA or Red Cross for class information)

7. Never keep strollers or bikes near a pool

8. Enforce pool rules for children and adults to follow

  • “No running on the pool deck”
  • “Stay away from drain covers”
  • “No diving in the shallow end”
  • “Always enter the pool feet first”

9. Inexperienced swimmers should always wear a life jacket in the water

10. For additional protection, install a power safety cover over the pool when not in use.

11. Never use a pool that has missing or broken pool drain covers; if someone does become stuck to a drain, pry a hand between the person’s body and the drain to break the seal instead of trying to pull their body away from the powerful suction

Source: Integrity Insurance


Spring storms like thunderstorms, heavy rain and tornados are inevitable and often times unpredictable. When severe weather strikes with little notice the risk of injury to yourself and damages to your property greatly increases. Here are some helpful tips to help protect you, loved ones and property during the next storm.


Keep yourself and loved ones safe

  • Monitor the weather by downloading an app for emergency info (American Red Cross or FEMA.gov)
  • If severe weather strikes, go to the lowest level in your home and stay away from windows and glass
  • Never use electronics during a storm and avoid touching metal objects
  • Conduct a home inventory (photos, video) of your personal belongings for insurance purposes and store in a safety deposit box or cloud-system
  • Install a sump pump with a battery backup system
  • Prepare a basic emergency kit
    • Bottled water (one gallon per person for up to three days)
    • Three-day supply of non-perishable food (don’t’ forget a can opener, disposable plates, and utensils)
    • Flashlight and extra batteries
    • First aid kit
    • Fire extinguisher
    • Battery-powered radio
    • Blankets
    • Important documents in a waterproof container — insurance policies, medical records, identification


Help avoid a property claim

  • Clean out your gutters, drains, and downspouts so that rain can flow off your roof
  • Inspect downspouts so they’re properly secured and placed for water to flow away from your house
  • Trim trees and shrubs
  • Have a professional inspect your roof and repair loose shingles
  • Secure outdoor patio furniture or other objects that could be moved by strong winds
  • Get all contents off the ground in flood prone areas
  • Read and understand your homeowner and auto insurance policies, especially your deductibles — talk with your independent insurance agent to make sure you have the appropriate amount of insurance coverage


Source: Integrity Insurance