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                                                                                                       Barbecue Season Is In Full Swing: Don’t Go Up In Flames

The joys of outdoor cooking also bring fire and associated risks. Here are some safety reminders for gas and propane barbecues to protect you and your property from harm or damage.
•    Never operate a barbecue in an enclosed space, close to a structure, or near combustibles. Have a one metre radius around it free of obstructions. 
•    Keep your barbecue in tip top shape. Check for hose breakage, valve leaks, and other parts before securing the tank well and turning on the gas. 
•    When in use, never leave the grill unattended, and when finished turn the tank off before the burners so the remaining gas in the lines can burn off. This can help prevent a flash the next time the BBQ is in use.
•    Make sure your fire extinguisher is easily accessible and in good working order. 
Additional Tips
•    Propane companies use an additive to create an unpleasant odour like rotten eggs to make a propane leak easier to detect, so you can shut off supply immediately, stop using the grill, and clear the area.
•    Although the risk of carbon monoxide is low when using a BBQ outdoors, it is not entirely eliminated. Learn to recognize the signs of CO2 poisoning and take appropriate action.
•    Store propane tanks in an upright position, in a spot where they are unlikely to be knocked or bumped to prevent any safety risk.

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Important Changes to Accident Benefits Coverage

Effective June 1, 2016, Ontario auto insurance reform will include new standard levels and new options to the Statutory Accident Benefits coverage. Your policy won’t change until it is time for it to be renewed; however, after June 1, 2016, if you wish to make changes to your coverage before your renewal, you can.  

Here are a few of the questions to consider when deciding how to customize your policy to suit your individual needs:

Are you aware OHIP won’t cover all your expenses such as physiotherapy, mobile devices, doctor’s fees for paperwork related to an injury, medical assessments and prescription drugs?

Does your employer provide a Group Insurance Plan? If so, most plans are limited to $500 a year per practitioner.

Do you have children or elderly parents that are dependent on you for care? Who would care for them if you were injured in an auto accident?

If you were working with an injury, would you need extra support to care for your dependants?

Are you a single parent?

How will you make sure that your expenses are not drained in the case of an unexpected auto accident?

These and other questions should be discussed with your insurance broker. Look for more questions to consider next month.