McCurdy Group - Insurance and Financial Consultants

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Air Bag Safety

Air bags and seat belts save lives every day and here are a few things you should know to make sure they work properly. Their purpose is to cushion occupants during a crash and provide protection to their bodies when they strike interior objects such as the steering wheel or a window. Modern vehicles may contain multiple airbag modules in various side and frontal locations of the passenger seating positions; the airbag is designed to only inflate in moderate to severe frontal crashes. 

Airbags are normally designed with the intention of supplementing the protection of an occupant who is correctly restrained with a seat belt. Be sure to use your shoulder and lap seat belt; air bags are not a substitute for seat belts. 

According to research conducted by Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, children exposed to air bags during a crash are twice as likely to suffer a serious injury.  Children younger than 13 years are safest when placed in the back seat of a vehicle, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). Other air bag safety rules to follow include:
  • Never place an infant in a rear-facing child safety seat in the front seat with an air bag. In a crash, the air bag comes out of the dashboard with its force directed at the back of the infant's head if riding in the front passenger seat.
  • The rear seat is the safest place in the car for children younger than 13 years. If you don’t have enough room in the back of your car to safely transport the number of children who need to travel safely, please visit a car seat check in your area where a trained expert will help evaluate your situation. You may need to arrange to use a safer vehicle with enough back seat positions to keep all the kids safe.
  • All passengers ages 13 and older need to wear a lap and shoulder belt when riding in the front seat. Air bags are designed to work with the lap and shoulder belt to protect the occupant in the event of a crash.
  • To keep your older child (age 13 and older) safe in the front seat:
    • Move the front seat as far back as possible from the dashboard
    • Teach your child not to lean forward to change the radio dial or to insert CDs
    • Insist that your child sit upright against the seatback, with the seat belt snug at all times

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

What If You Disagree With a Claims Adjustor?

If you’ve had a claim and disagree with the claims adjustor, you have the right to discuss your concerns with the adjustor.  You need to be prepared to show the adjustor why you disagree with them; you can’t just say that you think you should get paid more for your claim. If you have an auto accident, for example, and think that the adjustor’s figure is not enough to replace your vehicle, research the book value on Kelly Blue Book at  Make sure that you input all of the correct information on your vehicle. If the book value is different from what the adjustor is offering, provide that documentation to them. Sometimes you may have better information than the adjustor.

If you have a homeowners claim, get estimates from 2 or 3 licensed contractors for comparison. When you’re in the middle of a claim, you may be upset and may not realize the true value of your home or vehicle.  Taking these steps can reassure you that what you’re being offered is fair and correct but if not, make sure you have the necessary documentation to back up your position.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Auto Safety Kits

In today’s world, we all spend an enormous amount of time in our cars and may not even think about having a car safety kit in case of an emergency. Having a well planned safety kit in your car could save your life, especially in winter weather. You can purchase a ready-made kit or you can make your own but either way you should have one in all of your vehicles. Your kit should include at least:
  • Blankets or sleeping bags
  • Flashlights with extra batteries
  • First aid kit
  • A knife and some healthy non-perishable food (trail mix, peanut butter, crackers, etc…)
  • In a large plastic container with a cover, store paper towels and other sanitary items and an empty coffee can (or other waterproof container) to keep water-proof matches and a candle to melt snow for drinking water.
  • Sand or cat litter for tire traction and a shovel.
  • An auto emergency tool kit with basic tools, jumper cables, ice scrapers, etc…
  • A compass and road maps (what if your GPS or cell phones aren’t working?)
  • Extra clothing in case your clothing gets wet or you need to layer your clothes to stay warm