The Lutgert Insurance Blog

Recreational boating can be a wonderful way to spend time with family and friends. And making safety a priority can ensure that boating stays fun. If you plan to ride in a boat, canoe, or other water vehicle, take a minute to protect yourself and others from drowning.

  • Put on a U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jacket. Make sure all passengers put on a life jacket, regardless of distance to be traveled, size of boat, or swimming ability of boaters.
  • Do not use air-filled or foam toys, such as water wings, noodles, or inner-tubes, in place of life jackets. These toys are not designed to keep swimmers safe.
  • Don’t drink. Alcohol is involved in about a third of all recreational and boating fatalities.


As you deck the halls this holiday season, be fire smart. A small fire that spreads to a Christmas tree can grow large very quickly.

Picking the tree
• Choose a tree with fresh, green needles that do not fall off when touched.

Placing the tree
• Before placing the tree in the stand, cut 2” from the base of the trunk.
• Make sure the tree is at least three feet away from any heat source, like fireplaces, radiators, candles, heat vents or lights.
• Make sure the tree is not blocking an exit.
• Be sure to add water to the tree stand daily.

Lighting the tree
• Use lights that have the label of a recognized testing laboratory. Some lights are only for indoor or outdoor use.
• Replace any string of lights with worn or broken cords or loose bulb connections. Read manufacturer’s instructions for number of light strands to connect.
• Never use lit candles to decorate the tree.
• Always turn off Christmas tree lights before leaving home or going to bed.


  • Watch for children in the street and on medians when driving.
  • Prepare your home for trick-or-treaters by clearing porches, lawns and sidewalks.
  • Keep lit pumpkins away from where children will be walking.
  • Establish a curfew for your children.
  • When leaving the house make sure you lock your doors and set your security alarm system.
  • Go only to well-lit houses, remain on porches rather than entering houses, and stay in familiar neighborhoods.
  • Travel in groups and be accompanied by an adult.
  • If possible, carry a cell phone for emergency-know how to call 911.
  • Walk, don’t run, and obey all traffic signals (cross only at corners).
  • Make sure costumes don’t drag on the ground and make sure your costume or mask does not obstruct your vision.



  • A Halloween safety tip of prime importance for college students is to never allow or invite strangers into your dorm or apartment.
  • Avoid areas that are not well lit, and try to walk in high-traffic areas.
  • Travel in groups as much as possible. If you must travel alone, let a trusted friend or family member know where you are and who you are with.
  • Keep your cell phone handy in case you get separated from your group or need to contact emergency services.
  • Make use of safe forms of transportations such as cabs.
  • If you are going to a party venue, familiarize yourself with the fire exits when you arrive so that you are prepared if an emergency evacuation occurs.
  • Be cautious when approaching strangers while in your costume so that you do not draw any unnecessary or negative attention.
  • While you and your friends may have coordinated costumes, strangers may not be as knowledgeable about your costume and its accompanying props. Don’t carry fake weapons. Not only do you want to avoid scaring those around you, but you also want to avoid alarming the police.
  • Don’t eat any opened or unwrapped food or candy.