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Insurance For a Men’s Retail Clothing Store

I spent some time this Saturday morning working up some insurance quotes and options for a new men’s clothing retail store opening this Fall in Laguna Beach (CA). We’re looking into property, general liability, and workers’ compensation insurance coverage for the store.

Retail Clothing InsuranceSince my brain is on the subject of insurance for retail clothing stores, i wanted to share a brief risk summary that you should think about if you own a retail clothing store.

Property exposures are limited, but if a fire should occur, the clothing provides a combustible fire load and is highly susceptible to water and smoke damage. Theft may be a concern if any of the items sold have high value. Appropriate security measures should be in place.

Crime exposures are from Employee Dishonesty and Theft of Money and Securities either from holdup or safe burglary. Employee dishonesty is controlled through inventory monitoring, control of the cash register, disciplined controls and division of duties. Theft prevention requires controls of monies kept in the cash drawers and regular bank drops.

Premises liability is always a concern in a retail exposure where the public comes to the premises. Floor covering must be in good condition with no frayed or worn spots on carpet and no cracks or holes in flooring. Sufficient exits must be provided and be well-marked, with backup systems in case of power failure. Dressing rooms must be well maintained and privacy carefully guarded. Shoplifting procedures must be fully understood and utilized by all employees.

Parking lots and sidewalks need to be in good repair with snow and ice removed, and generally level and free of exposure to slip and fall. If the business is open after dark, adequate lighting and appropriate security for the area must be present.

Products liability for this type of operation is normally low. Direct importing of clothes and tailoring can add to the exposure.

Workers compensation exposure is from lifting, which can cause back injury, hernia, sprain, and strain. What kind of training do employees receive, and what types of material lifting or conveying devices are used? If tailoring services are offered, injuries due to sewing and cutting injuries are possible.

Minimum recommended coverage:

Business Personal Property, Business Income, Employee Dishonesty, Money and Securities, Accounts Receivable, Computers, General Liability, Employee Benefits, Umbrella, Hired and Nonownership Auto, Workers Compensation. Many of these coverage’s can be included within a single Businessowners insurance policy.

Other coverages to consider:

Building, Leasehold Interest, Real Property Legal Liability, Forgery, Computer Fraud, Bailees Customers, Fine Arts, Employment Related Practices, Business Auto Liability and Physical Damage.

Have a retail clothing store and need some guidance on your insurance? You can contact me anytime to discuss. I’d be happy to help you out.

-JK

Source: Rough Notes, Inc

Fire Burns Through La Bodega Market In Long Beach

A two-alarm commercial building fire burned through La Bodega Market on 7th and Magnolia in Long Beach on Monday night. Long Beach Fire Department received the first report of a fire at 9:27PM. According to the Long Beach Fire Department, the building was heavy with smoke and fire upon first arrival and a second alarm was called within a minute. For the full story, read about it HERE in the Long Beach Post.

Here’s some video from the Long Beach Post of the fire:

Have a small business in Long Beach? When’s the last time you reviewed your business insurance policies to make sure your coverage is sufficient and accurate? Make sure you’re reviewing your policies at least annually with your insurance agent or broker.

Beyond insurance, you might want to consider establishing a fire prevention plan or a business continuity and recovery plan. If you need help in any of these areas, I have some resources that I can help you with. You’re welcome to contact me anytime to discuss.

-JCK

Video From Cockpit of A plane Fighting the Rim Fire in Yosemite

Look at this unreal footage of the Rim Fire in Yosemite, California, taken from the cockpit of an Air National Guard plane:

Hot and dry weather conditions are well-known risk factors for forest fires. A majority of the forest fires are caused by a combination of these conditions and careless human activity. 

Officials expect some regions of the country like California to be at a higher risk for forest fires than usual due to low moisture and rising temperatures.

Here are some tips to keep top of mind when choosing a site to start a fire:

  • Check to see if open fires are allowed in your area.
  • Choose an area with an abundance of rocks and sand and little vegetation.
  • Do not start a fire underneath low hanging branches or nearby bushes.
  • Have plenty of water nearby in case the fire gets out of hand.
  • Keep the fire small.
  • Never wander away from a fire; it should be watched and kept under control at all times.

-JK

Aerial Firefighting

This is a pretty cool video of a helicopter maneuvering in someone’s backyard to scoop up water from a pool to help fight a wildfire.

Planes and helicopters are critical tools in managing wildfires, particularly in California where we face wildfires annually. Although aircraft are often used to fight wildfires, aircraft alone cannot put them out. Firefighters rely on planes and helicopters to:

  • Deliver equipment and supplies.
  • Deploy smokejumpers and rappellers to a fire.
  • Transport firefighters.
  • Provide reconnaissance of new fires, fire locations, and fire behavior.
  • Drop fire-retardant or water to slow down a fire so firefighters can contain it.
  • Ignite prescribed fires

Thanks to all our fire service personnel who help protect us when we need it. We are grateful to have them.

Source: US Fire Service

Scary Tornado Sirens in Chicago

Listen to these Tornado Sirens in downtown Chicago from 2008 apparently

What do you during a tornado? Well…Getting off a tall building would be job one.

Here’s an instructional guide to learn what to do before, during and after a tornado: (Tornadoes). <— Click here and feel free to share with others.

Luckily, tornadoes aren’t something we have to worry about much here in California. Unfortunately, earthquakes are.

-JK

Huge Thunder Storm In Japan; Train Takes A Direct Hit

We don’t see thunder and lightning like this in Southern California! Watch this train get struck by lightning at the 1:20 mark in the video:

When a lightning storm is on the verge of striking your area, you need to take cover to get out of harm’s way. Here are some tips from a former post on Lightning Safety Considerations

-JK

How Are Commercial Insurance Premiums Determined?

The way an insurance policy is rated determines how the policy premium is developed. Rating factors vary based on the line of insurance you are purchasing.

CalculatorIf you are purchasing commercial property insurance, the building rating formula is based on factors including square footage, type of construction, sprinklered or non-sprinklered, the fire protection classification, etc.

If you are purchasing general liability insurance, the rating formula can be based on square footage, payroll, or gross sales depending on the general liability classification codes used. These are known as rating exposures.

Once the rating exposures are identified and the deductibles selected (usually from information you have provided on the application), the premium is calculated by a simple formula: rate x exposure = premium. The deductible amount you choose will be calculated in the rate. The higher the deductible (the amount you choose to self-insure) the lower the rate. By utilizing higher deductibles, you can bring your premium cost down; however, you do not want to jeopardize your company’s financial future by choosing overly large deductibles.

Speak with your broker-agent for the deductible options available to you when purchasing commercial insurance.

The basic rating equation most often utilizes other modification factors, which can include experience modifications, schedule rating, or judgment rating. Because rating formulas can range from simple to complex, depending on the line of insurance, it is important to discuss how your policy is rated and how the policy premium is calculated with your broker-agent.

Source: California Department of Insurance

-JK

Avoid the Jolt from a Lightning Bolt!

I came across this fierce 30 second video on Youtube today of a lightning bolt striking the shore of a beach about a hundred or so yards from a hotel balcony where some guy was filming. Check it out (some cursing included so beware)

The force and power are so crazy it knocked the guy back a little bit!

Living in Southern California, we don’t see a lot of intense thunder and lightning, but you should learn to identify the early signs of an oncoming thunder and lightning storm.

Typically you’ll see towering clouds in the shape of a cauliflower, dark sky, distant rumbles of thunder and flashes of lightning. When a storm is on the verge of striking your area, you need to take cover to get out of harm’s way.

Here’s how:

  • Seek shelter in an enclosed building, if possible.
  • If you are in a car, stay inside and keep the windows securely rolled up.
  • Do not use a small shed, pavilion or lean-to as shelter; they do not provide enough protection.
  • Stay several feet away from open windows, sinks, toilets, tubs, showers, electric boxes, outlets and appliances during a lightning storm. Lightning bolts can flow through these items, “jump” to you and give you a jolt.
  • Do not use a landline telephone during a storm. Opt for a cellular or cordless phone, which is not connected to the building’s wiring.

If you are caught outside in a lightning storm:

  • If your skin starts to tingle or your hair stands up, lightning may be about to strike. Crouch to the ground on the balls of your feet and place your feet close together. Then, place your hands on your knees and lower your head. Try to get as close to the ground as possible without placing your hands or knees on the ground.
  • Avoid seeking shelter under trees, near metal fences, pipes or tall and long objects.
  • If you are swimming, boating or fishing, seek shelter on land immediately.
  • If you are boating and cannot get to shore before the storm hits, crouch your body down in the middle of the boat, as low as you can get.

Next time you’re in the path of a thunderstorm, you can stay cool knowing Jim Kinmartin taught you everything you need to know about dealing with it ;).

Planning is important when it comes to preparing for storms, and that includes having the proper home or business insurance. Contact your broker or me to learn more about insurance solutions for your home, business and life.

JK

The Importance of Terrorism Insurance

In the wake of the recent Boston Marathon bombings, the issue of terrorism was brought to light again as a harsh reality we face this day in age in the United States and throughout the world.

Bob Hartwig of the Insurance Information Institute http://www.iii.org interviewed on FOX recently talking about terrorism insurance for businesses.

A standard business policy does not cover for damage or loss of business due to an act of terror. In an age where terrorism is becoming “the new normal”, having the proper coverage is important.

Contact me if I can help with questions on terrorism insurance, or the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act and how it relates to you business insurance.

-JK

What To Do In the Event of An Insurance Claim

When you deal with an incident that gives rise to an insurance claim, it’s usually a pretty crappy situation. It can be stressful, terrifying, frightening, and alarming in many cases. First things first, try not to panic. Hopefully it’s an incident you carry insurance for to be protected.

Your insurance contract requires that you report all claims promptly. Contact your insurance carrier or broker as possible after a property, liability, worker’s comp or automobile claim. An insurance company claims adjuster will be assigned to handle your claim. You should then be able to deal directly with the adjuster to settle your claim, but your broker can be there with you to assist you along the way.

Here’s step-by-step suggestions on how you should handle property, liability, workers compensation, and auto insurance claims.

Property Claims

In the event of damage to your building or contents:

  1. Protect the property from further damage:
    • Call the proper authorities and utilities (gas, electric, telephone).
    • Take photos of the damage before having emergency repairs made, such as boarding up windows or covering holes in the roof.
  2. Call your insurance broker or carrier to report the loss.
  3. Call a contractor to estimate the building damages.
  4. Separate damaged contents from undamaged contents. Do not discard any items until the claims adjuster gives you the authority to do so.
  5. Keep records of expenses if you are forced to temporarily relocate your business.
  6. Do not authorize repairs until the claims adjuster has given you the authority to do so.

After the claim is reported to the insurance company, the claims adjuster will:

  1. Contact you by phone or mail to discuss the loss
  2. Arrange for an appraiser to inspect extensively damaged property
  3. Assist you with your choice of contractors to make the repairs
  4. Contact you for a settlement

Liability Claims

In the event of injuries or damage to property of others which you allegedly caused:

  1. Call your insurance broker or carrier to report the claim.
  2. Forward any correspondence, including a summons from an attorney representing the other party.
  3. Do not discuss the claim with the other party or their attorney. Refer them to your insurance company’s claims adjuster or to us.

After the claim is reported to the insurance company, the claims adjuster will:

  1. Contact you to discuss the incident that allegedly caused the injury or damage to the property
  2. Deal directly with the other party and/or attorney to handle the claim

Workers’ Compensation Claims

In the event an employee is injured on the job:

  1. Complete the Employer’s First Report of Injury or Disease form for all claims. Either use the “call in” reporting system or fax the original form to the insurance company.
  2. Forward a copy of the First Report to your broker in the event of a disabling injury or death claim. They should follow-up with the insurance company for their prompt handling of the claim.
  3. Contact the insurance company to question the status of a claim. If you experience delays or have questions, contact your broker for assistance.

After you report the claim to the insurance company, the claims adjuster will:

  1. Contact the injured employee to discuss the accident
  2. Request copies of bills and doctors’ reports for medical treatment administered
  3. Contact you, the employer, if there is any lost time from work as a result of the injury

Auto Insurance Claims

In the event of an automobile accident:

  1. Report the accident to the police.
  2. Obtain information about the other people involved in the accident such as:
    1. Names, addresses and phone numbers
    2. Insurance company
    3. Type of vehicle
    4. Auto and driver’s license numbers.
  3. Have your vehicle towed to the nearest repair shop if the vehicle is not drivable. Do not authorize repairs until the claims adjuster gives you the authority to do so.
  4. Call your insurance broker or carrier to report the accident.

In the event of a windshield, vandalism or theft loss:

  1. Report the vandalism loss or theft to the police.
  2. Call us to report a loss.

After the claim is reported to the insurance company, the claims adjuster will:

  1. Contact you to request details of the accident and repair estimates
  2. Arrange for an appraiser to inspect the damages of vehicles that are not drivable or extensively damaged
    1. Contact you for a settlement
    2. Deal directly with the others involved in the accident

You should not talk to others involved in the accident, but refer them to your claims adjuster.

-JK

Source: Zywave, Inc.

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