Hitting the road this summer? Be prepared.

Posted by Alex Boyer on Sat, Jul 08, 2017

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It's summer road trip season! Please enjoy this edition of Risk Solutions Series from our friends at Nationwide Insurance to make sure your summer road trips are safe and fun!

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With gas prices expected to remain relatively low and the current average price of unleaded gasoline at $2.37 per gallon,¹ you can expect another busy summer driving season. With this rise in traffic comes an increase in calls for roadside assistance. Insurance companies are busy preparing for a high number of roadside assistance dispatches for common vacation mishaps, such as a flat tire, dead car battery or keys locked inside the car. The most common calls for roadside assistance from our clients are: towing (54%), jump starts (23%) and flat tires (15%).²

Nationwide Private Client Risk Solutions recommends the following tips to be safe on the road.

Prepare for your road trip

• Take your vehicle to be inspected by a qualified mechanic several days before you depart.

• Make sure your vehicle is in good working order for your trip, including but not limited to tires, battery, belts, fluids and air conditioner.

• Ensure child car seats are properly installed and are size-appropriate.

• Get a good night’s sleep. Drive only when well rested, and make sure to stop every two hours or 200 miles to stay sharp.

• Pack an emergency kit, and include:

--Water
--Warm blankets
--Flashlight
--Jumper cables
--Flares or reflectors
--Tools to change a tire
--First-aid kit
--Fully charged cellular phone

Stay safe during a roadside emergency

• Take action immediately. Pull onto the shoulder and out of traffic as far as possible considering the conditions.

• Warn others you are having trouble. Use your hazard and warning flashers immediately. Raise the vehicle hood, if safe to do so, to alert passing authorities that the vehicle is disabled and help is needed.

• Call for roadside assistance. Nationwide Private Client policyholders with roadside assistance coverage can call our Solutions Center at 1-855-473-6410 and select option 1, then option 1 again, to be directly connected to our roadside assistance partner, Agero.³

• Wait for professional help to arrive. Don’t attempt to fix your vehicle unless you have training to do so. In 2016, the wait time for roadside assistance arrival was an average of 30 minutes or less.

• Don’t exit your car until it’s safe. Don’t exit the vehicle unless it is necessary and safe to do so — especially if you are on a  busy road or highway. Don’t stand next to or behind the vehicle. Too often people survive car accidents only to be injured from a secondary accident because they have gotten out of their vehicle.

• Download our mobile app. With the Private Client Connect™ mobile app, help is at your fingertips. You can access roadside assistance benefits whether or not you are in an insured vehicle. This will give you added peace of mind, especially if you have children since the benefits follow the client, not the vehicle. Your children can get assistance even when traveling in a friend’s car.

About Agero, our roadside assistance partner:

With more than 40 years of experience, Agero is a leading provider of vehicle and driver safety, security and information services, including roadside assistance, consumer affairs and claims management services.

Agero protects over 80 million vehicle owners in partnership with leading automobile manufacturers, insurance carriers and others. Managing one of the largest national networks of service providers, Agero responds to more than 10 million requests annually. Agero’s awardwinning solutions leverage advances in technology and information services to accelerate and enhance response to drivers’ needs while strengthening customer loyalty. Agero, a member company of The Cross Country Group, is headquartered in Medford, Mass., with operations throughout North America.

• 11 out of 15 top insurance carriers choose Agero
• 75% of new passenger vehicles sold in U.S. use Agero’s solutions

If you have any questions, please contact your agent or Nationwide Private Client Risk Solutions professional. For more information on how you can help prevent losses, visit nationwide.com/solutionseries.

We offer this information to assist you in making decisions that can help mitigate your risk. While we cannot address every possible scenario or guarantee these tips will work for you, our goal is to support your efforts to protect yourself and your family.

 

1gasprices.aaa.com/ as of 5/31/17
2Data provided by our roadside assistance vendor Agero as of August 2016.
3Roadside assistance benefits are only available to Nationwide Private Client policyholders. Coverages may vary by state, so check with your policy or insurance agent to verify what benefits are available to you.

Tags: E&K Insurance, safety, auto insurance, driving, Car insurance, accident, prepare, personal insurance, vehicle maintenance, vehicle preparation, personal liability, motor vehicle, nationwide insurance, roadside, roadside emergency, roadside assistance, summer, road trip, emergency, nationwide

DRIVERS, LOCAL AUTHORITIES DEAL WITH TOUGH WINTER’S POTHOLES

Posted by Alex Boyer on Wed, Mar 18, 2015

Trusted Choice® survey shows about 50% of U.S. car owners report vehicle pothole damage.

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Eatontown, NJ, March 18, 2015— Poor road conditions have cost consumers and the insurance industry at least $27 billion over a five year period, according to a 2014 survey commissioned by Trusted Choice® and the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (IIABA or the Big “I”). The survey also reveals that from 2009 to 2014 half of car owners experienced damage to their vehicles as a result of potholes. As millions of Americans encounter potholes as the rough winter wraps, Trusted Choice® and E&K urge drivers to be cautious now and as repairs continue.

“The snow, ice and freezing rain during the rough winter months left their mark on our roads in New Jersey and across the country,” says Ken Auerbach, Managing Director of E&K Agency, Inc. in Eatontown and Lakewood, a Trusted Choice® agency. “Severe potholes have led to accidents which may impact insurance rates, as premiums are determined by past claims, accidents and driving violations. Potholes and poor road conditions aren’t just an inconvenience, they are an expensive and dangerous result of harsh winters.”

The pothole survey also found that 31% of car owners who reported pothole damage to their vehicles filed a claim with their insurance company. A surprising 65% of respondents who needed repairs said they (or a third party) paid out of pocket for the vehicle to be fixed. Only about 3% said local authorities stepped in to foot the bill. For about 40% of respondents, that bill was more than $500.

“This survey highlights how widespread the pothole problem is on our roadways and that the costs are enormous to both the insurance industry and to consumers,” adds Auerbach “And now, local authorities are struggling to keep up with the extensive road repairs.”

While motorists in the Midwest, Northeast and North Central regions of the country reported the most pothole damage, surprisingly the numbers were not that different even in the Southern and Western regions which typically experience milder winters.

“Drivers rely on their auto insurance coverage and their own pocketbooks to deal with unexpected expenses,” continues Auerbach. “An E&K insurance agent can help you select the coverage that best suits you and your vehicle by helping you evaluate your insurance needs and risks.”

E&K and Trusted Choice® independent agents offer the following tips to motorists to help avoid costly damage from potholes and stay safe as they hit the roads after a tough winter:

Pothole safety tips:

  • Keep an eye on traffic patterns. A number of cars that slows down or move quickly to other lanes may be a sign of major potholes or road damage ahead.
  • Avoid the urge to swerve out of the way of a pothole at the last minute. You may swerve into the path of an oncoming vehicle. Risking damage to your car is wiser than risking the loss of your life or that of another person.
  • Report potholes to your state or local transportation department. Some states and localities have pothole hotlines. Motorists who think their state or local government will pay for damage to their cars may be out of luck. Laws in this area vary by jurisdiction and, even where such remedies are available, conditions may apply such as a requirement that the jurisdiction had notice of the pothole.
  • If you hit a pothole and suspect damage, pull over as soon as it is safe. If you notice damage, record details and specific damage—just as you would in the event of a collision with another motorist—in case you need to file an insurance claim.
  • Check in at least annually with your independent insurance agent to ensure that you have the right coverage.

E&K Agency, Inc. is a local Trusted Choice® agency that represents multiple insurance companies, so it offers you a variety of personal and business coverage choices and can customize an insurance plan to meet your specialized needs. This firm adheres to a pledge of performance, committing them to providing excellent customer service. You can visit E&K Agency, Inc. online at http://www.e-kinsurance.com or call it at 732-389-6000 or 732-575-1600.

The pothole survey was conducted for Trusted Choice® and the Big “I” by MFour Mobile Research, Inc. using MFour’s Surveys on the Go® Smartphone Application Panel which includes Apple and Android mobile device users. MFour is an independent research company headquartered in Costa Mesa, California. Interviews of a nationally representative sample of 2,565 U.S. car owners were conducted in June 2014 and weighted by age and gender to represent the general U.S. population over age 18. More information about MFour can be obtained at www.mfour.com.

Tags: E&K Insurance, NJ, Safe, Insurance, safety, winter, auto insurance, driving, New Jersey, potholes flat tire insurance claim, Car insurance, coverage, accident, prepare, File Claim, winter roads, vehicle maintenance, vehicle preparation, avoid potholes, potholes, avoid pothole damage

Prepare Your Vehicles for Winter Roads

Posted by Alex Boyer on Sun, Feb 08, 2015

great-american

The Great American Insurance Co. has some useful and helpful tips for you to prepare your vehicles for winter roads to minimize damage and ensure safety. 

Reliable transportation is especially important in the winter. Driver and vehicle preparation needs to be taken seriously because maneuvering in the snow and ice requires special skills. To prevent a winter wonderland from becoming a winter nightmare, you need to prepare their employees, volunteers and vehicles for the hazards of winter weather driving.

The good news is there are steps you can take to help prevent vehicle problems from occurring when the temperature drops:
  • Take the vehicle to a mechanic to check out the battery, antifreeze level, thermostat, heater, brakes and defroster.
  • Check to make sure the tires have adequate tread for better traction, and that they are equipped to handle extreme winter driving.
  • Make sure the front and rear lights are operational, especially the car's flashing hazard lights.
  • Top off the washer fluid reservoir. Make sure to only use washer fluid, as it doesn't freeze and will help break down the frozen layer on the windshield.
  • Stock the vehicle with basic winter driving equipment, such as a scraper and brush, small shovel, jumper cables and a bag of sand or cat litter for tire traction.
  • You and your driving employees should communicate more frequently, and consider placing phone calls prior to leaving and upon arrival at a destination. Make it clear that employees should not call or text while driving. Fully charge cell phones and have an extra phone charger in the vehicle.
  • Fill the gasoline tank, even for a short distance, and stop to fill-up long before the tank begins to run low. Keeping the tank as full as possible will minimize condensation that can lead to freezing and provide the maximum advantage in case of trouble.
  • Always store a first aid kit. This should include all the usual items plus winter extras like flashlights, a fresh supply of batteries, blankets, matches, extra clothing, bottled water and non-perishable snacks.

To further prevent damage to your vehicles this winter, make sure you check out our tips for avoiding pothole damage, as well.

Tags: winter, auto insurance, driving, Car insurance, accident, winter roads, vehicle maintenance, vehicle preparation

6 things you must know when buying car insurance

Posted by Alex Boyer on Thu, Feb 05, 2015

Color_Logo_5E&K's Personal Insurance Services Manager, Jeanne Cosentino, was recently featured in an Asbury Park Press article on the six things you must know when buying car insurance. Read the full article here. And check out our personal auto insurance page!

Tags: E&K Insurance, NJ, Insurance, auto insurance, Teen Driving, driving, New Jersey, Car insurance, coverage, accident

Car accident? What you need to know about your insurance!

Posted by Rachel Auerbach on Mon, Apr 14, 2014

Do you know about your auto coverages?

Liability is one of the basic types of coverages and is needed for accidents that you cause. It does not pay for medical expenses. But, it will pay for the other person's damages and it will also pay for a lawyer in case you are sued.

Bodily Injury Liability is a type of basic liability coverage that helps pay for another person's physical injuries acquired in an accident you caused. This will cover what you are legally obligated to pay such as medical bills, rehab costs, lost wages, long-term care and funeral costs. The minimum bodily injury liability coverage in New Jersey is $15,000 per person and $30,000 per accident.

Property Damage Liability is another type of basic liability coverage that is coupled with your bodily injury liability. This covers any property damages in an accident you caused. If you chose a $10,000 limit, you will be covered up to $10,000 worth of property damages, which includes the other person's vehicle, a fence or mailbox. The minimum property damage liability in New Jersey is $5,000 per accident.

describe the imageAngelo Young - Creative Commons

Personal Injury Protection (PIP) pays for your medical coverage if you're injured in an accident AND it covers other people who may have also been injured in the accident.  Another important feature: it does not matter who caused the accident, your medical expenses will still be covered. PIP, or the "no fault" protection, could cover medical bills, lost wages, rehabilitation costs, funeral costs, child care/lawn maintenance/extra help if you can no longer do certain things due to injury. The minimum PIP coverage in New Jersey is $15,000.

 

Tags: Liability, auto insurance, Car insurance, injury, coverage, accident