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Let it Snow: Safety Tips for Driving on Ice

Driving on ice is extremely dangerous and poses unique challenges and risks. Even the most skilled drivers should avoid driving when the roads ice up. When the temperature gets close to freezing, you should start getting concerned. However, driving on ice isn’t always avoidable. What should you do when you’re required to drive on icy roads to reach your destination? Prepare  Equip your vehicle with chains or snow tires. Chains are by far the most effective and should be used where ice and snow remain on the roadway.  Correctly operating windshield wipers and defrosters are also essential to safety while driving in snow and ice conditions. Make sure to check them before you set out! Feel out the road by starting out slowly and testing your steering control and braking ability. Avoid spinning your tires when you start by gently pressing your gas pedal until the car starts to roll. Start slowing down three times sooner than you normally would when turning or stopping. Remain Calm  If you discover that you’re driving on ice, you must first and foremost remain calm. Never hit the brakes or make any sudden movements with the steering wheel, even if you feel yourself sliding. The best thing to do is to slowly take your foot off the accelerator. Slow down as much as you can without putting yourself in danger of being rear-ended.  Find a Secure Location  Find a safe and secure location to park your vehicle, such as a parking lot. It is not recommended that you stop on the roadway, including the shoulder. Unlike with snow where you can normally navigate through, when driving on ice, you should find a safe location to park as soon as possible.  Correspond with Conditions  Reduce your speed to correspond with conditions. There is no such thing as a “safe” speed range at which you may drive on snow or ice. You must be extremely cautious until you are able to determine how much traction you can expect from your tires. When stopping, avoid sudden movements of the steering wheel and pump the brake gently. Avoid locking of brakes on glazed ice as it will cause a loss of steering and control.  Take Other Precautions  Maintain a safe interval between you and the car ahead of you. Keep your vehicle in the best possible driving condition. The…
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As We Head Into Fall and Winter, Now’s the Time to Brush Up on Night Driving Safety

The days are getting shorter, and with Daylight Savings right around the corner, they’re about to get even more so. Many people will find themselves spending more time driving in the dark during these coming months, which jeopardizes depth perception, color recognition, and peripheral vision. The glare of headlights from an oncoming vehicle can also become a huge obstacle for drivers. With the holidays coming up fast, no one wants to end up in a costly, stressful, time-consuming accident.  Enhance Night Vision At night visibility is limited to about 500 feet with high beams and 250 feet with normal headlights, allowing for less reaction time.  What should you do to combat darkness? Aim your headlights correctly, and make sure they’re clean Dim your dashboard Look away from oncoming lights If you wear glasses, make sure they’re anti-reflective Clean the windshield to eliminate streaks Slow down to compensate for limited visibility and reduced stopping time As we age, we have greater difficulty seeing at night. Some individuals of the age 60+  also may have compromised vision due to eye health issues. Drivers, especially those who are older, should: Have annual vision exams Reduce speed Take a driving course (Even experienced drivers can benefit from a refresher) Minimize distractions Check the side effects of prescription drugs Limit driving to daytime hours if possible. Avoid Fatigued Driving Drowsy driving puts everyone on the road at risk. Losing two hours of sleep has the same effect on driving as having three beers, and tired drivers are three times more likely to be in a car crash if they’re fatigued. Ways to combat fatigued driving includes:  Get at least seven hours of sleep  Don’t drive if you’ve been awake for over 16 hours  Stop every two hours to rest Pull over and take a nap if you’re drowsy Plan travel times for when you feel most awake. Stay Safe During Rush Hour Evening rush hour (between 4 and 7 pm on weekdays) is a dangerous time to drive due to busy roads and drivers eager to get home. In the colder months, it’s dark during rush hour, making the driving situation that much more dangerous. Put safety first by:  Not being an impatient driver  Staying in your lane and aware of drivers who dart from lane to lane Even though the route may be familiar,…
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Your Car Breaks Down in the Middle of Nowhere. What Do You Do?

Driving with any vehicle issues means you are taking a chance of making it to your next destination. Car troubles can be anything that includes a tire blow out to overheating of the engine. No matter what type of problem you are having, there is always a chance you will end up stranded on the side of the road. This can be both frustrating and dangerous. The best thing you can do is to have a plan if you find yourself broken down.  Use Your Hazard Lights or Emergency Flashers When you know you are going to have to pull off the side of the road, the safest way to do so is to alert any other drivers. You can do this by using your hazard lights that each vehicle is equipped with. The button is usually an orange or red triangle. This will cause your lights to start to flash in unison and is a great way to indicate to other passing drivers that you are stopping or there is trouble with your vehicle. Leave the lights on until the tow truck pulls up. Figure Out Your Location Now that you are safely pulled off the side of the road and you have your hazard lights on, you must know where you are. You can’t just call for help without any idea on where the tow truck has to pick you up. If possible, use the GPS on your phone or in your car to find your location. You want to be able to give the most accurate location to the tow truck operator so they can easily find you. This will also keep the amount of time you’re waiting on the side of the road to a minimum, lessening the chance that you’re involved in an accident or other dangers.  Exit the Car Safely Depending on where you are located, the traffic around you could be heavy. The cars that are passing may still have a hard time seeing you on the side of the road. Your safety is most important and that is why you should be careful when you are exiting the car. If possible, get out of the passenger side of the car so that you are not walking out in the oncoming traffic lane. A popped hood is the universal sign of a vehicle…
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The Three Main Types of Auto Insurance Coverage, and Why They’re All Important

When you’re paying your bills every month, you may pay for auto insurance without giving a lot of thought into what it actually does for you. The reality is that auto insurance isn’t one single thing; there are three main types of coverage (and some other optional coverages too). All three of these are important and they work together to make sure you’re protected. Let’s discuss the three main types and what they offer you. Liability Liability insurance, which is further divided into property damage liability and bodily injury liability is the coverage that pays for another driver’s expenses in case of an at-fault accident. If, for example, you hit another vehicle and were found at fault, your liability insurance would kick in and pay for the car repairs and any medical expenses that were accrued. Liability insurance is required by law in order to drive your vehicle. Collision Collision insurance is the coverage that pays for your own expenses if you are involved in an at-fault accident. In the example above, if you had collision insurance your insurance would pay for the repairs or replacement of your vehicle. If the accident was not your fault, and instead was the fault of the other driver, his or her insurance should be the one that will pay for your damages. In the unusual case where the other driver isn’t covered, your “uninsured motorist” policy would come into effect, if you had chosen to purchase it. Comprehensive Comprehensive insurance is the type of coverage that pays you for anything that is NOT a standard car accident. Comprehensive covers you in case of theft, vandalism, fire, acts of war and other incidents. In most of these cases, there may not be someone that could directly take the “blame” for the damage. However, with comprehensive coverage, you will not have to worry because your vehicle will be covered for repair or replacement. These policies can be quite different from one another. Your comprehensive policy will detail exactly what would be included. While you may not look forward to paying for car insurance, the peace of mind and protection it provides you is something you can’t live without. If you’d like more information about affordable and effective coverage, check AJ Benet’s auto insurance options, including our Youthful Driver auto insurance policies. We look forward to protecting you and…
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The Auto Insurance Claims Process, Step by Step

An auto insurance claim is a request made to an insurance company for compensation for damages sustained after a car accident, or for representation or intervention on the insured’s behalf when they are liable for damages. If you are involved in an accident, you will want to make a claim. When it comes time to file an auto insurance claim, a lot of people aren’t always in the best head space. Car accidents are incredibly nerve-wracking, and trying to coordinate all of the necessary information and figure out what costs you are responsible for can be stressful on anyone. Rather than waiting until the accident has already happened to try to figure everything out, we encourage you to familiarize yourself with our guide to the claims process now. That way, if an accident ever does happen (though it hopefully won’t), you’ll be ready to go and make the process as short and painless as possible. 1. Contact the Police After a car accident, contact the police and have an officer take down the details of the accident in the police report. You may be shaken up after an accident and not be in a position to assess what’s happened. If the other party becomes difficult, the police will be there to make sure you’re safe and that emergency service personnel are there to assist with injuries or hazards. 2. Contact Your Insurance Agent Having your car accident information ready will help you keep track of the information needed to file your claim. Be prepared to provide accident details to your insurer. Call your insurance company from the scene of the accident while waiting for the police or after you are safe. They will walk you through the next steps. If your car is not drivable, your insurer can advise you on transportation for you and your car. If you have this coverage on your policy, they can arrange for your car to be towed, and get you a rental car. If you do not call them, you won’t know how they can help and you may spend more money than needed. They will then open the claims file. A claims professional will represent you in any discussions with third parties involved, investigate the circumstances, handle vehicle repairs and rental arrangements, and get the claim settled. That’s what your insurance company…
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Who Really Causes the Most Car Accidents? Common Stereotypes Explored

There are many stereotypes around the question “Who causes the most car accidents?” Some people claim that women are statistically worse drivers than men, while others claim that men cause more accidents. Some say that newly-licensed teenagers are the biggest dangers of the road, while still others feel that senior citizens above a certain age should not be driving. The truth is, we can all be accident-prone and are constantly at risk out there on the road. No matter who you are, it’s always crucial for your safety and your finances to be careful on the road and secure Auto Insurance before driving. Let’s explore a couple common stereotypes that have been in the talk for quite some time now. Men vs. Women The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety did a study for findings based on the idea that men tend to engage in certain riskier behaviors on the road than women. Men’s statistical bad driving tends to stem from deciding to err on the opposite side of caution. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration conducted an analysis showing that nearly twice as many men 34 years or younger die in speeding crashes than women in the same age bracket. It was also found that more men drink and drive, get traffic violations and are deemed responsible for a greater portion of car accidents. That being said, according to the National Highway Safety Administration, men also drive a lot more miles than women which could be why men cause 6.1 million accidents per year, while women cause 4.4 million per year. On average, men drive 16,550 miles and women drive 10,142 miles per year according to Federal Highway Administration. Therefore men drive about 30 percent more miles than women. Yet, they’re implicated in slightly less than 30 percent of car accidents. Men do cause more accidents, but they are slightly less at-risk than women, by a small margin. The conclusion? We can all be risky drivers at times, and no one should consider themselves one hundred percent safe from car accidents. Seniors vs. Teens Mistakes are expected from young drivers, but the first few years are pretty risky. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety drivers, ages 16-19 are three times more likely to crash than drivers over 20. The United States Census Bureau found that teens cause about…
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Going Beyond Your Automobile Policy

Protecting your vehicle with a New York Auto Insurance Policy is a top priority. However, what if you find yourself in a situation where your auto coverage is not enough? What happens if the limit fails to fully cover the other driver’s needs? The purpose of your umbrella policy is to protect your assets from an unforeseen event. In the event of a lawsuit, your umbrella coverage will pay for the damages you’re responsible for up to the policy limit. For example, if you’re at fault in a car accident, your automobile insurance will cover the other driver up to the limit you selected. According to an article in Nerdwallet, you might need umbrella liability insurance if you own property or have a lot of money in the bank. The best way to decide if you need umbrella insurance is by determining your net worth. If your net worth exceeds the amount of liability insurance you can purchase for your home or  vehicle, then consider the umbrella policy. For example, most insurers won’t sell you umbrella policy unless you have $250,000 worth of liability coverage on your car and $300,000 on your home. At AJ Benet, we make sure that your Umbrella Liability insurance includes more than the simple general liability, auto liability, and product liability. Our policies extend in cases where you underlying limits are exhausted. This provides protection from personal injury, liquor law, contractual and vehicle. Umbrella insurance policies also provide coverage for risks that might not be included in your primary commercial liability insurance policies. For more information, call us today at 888.639.4560.

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Understanding Your Policy: Personal Auto vs. Commercial Auto

Purchasing an auto insurance policy can seem complex, especially when you are not sure about the type of coverage you need. If you own a business and use a vehicle solely for the business, there are certain types of vehicle usage that is not covered under your personal policy. Therefore, it’s important to understand the differences between a New York Personal Auto Insurance policy and a New York Business Auto Insurance policy. Basics of Personal Coverage Personal auto insurance is designed for the needs of consumers, either for individuals or families. If you are in an auto accident, it protects your personal assets by providing the funds needed for car repair, medical expenses or liability charges. Obtaining personal auto insurance is relatively easy; however, you do need to provide specific information to ask for a quote, such as: The Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) Make & model of car The names, ages, and basic information of primary drivers Basics of Commercial Coverage Commercial auto insurance is designed for the needs of businesses that have several drivers and multiple cars. According to the Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators, commercial companies do not register vehicles the same way as a personal vehicle. A company will have to provide different information to obtain a quote. Another difference between commercial and personal coverage comes down to the amount of drivers. For example, a business may need coverage for fifteen drivers, even if it’s for occasional usage. The rates will be much higher as a result of the number of drivers. In a nutshell, when it comes to drivers, vehicles, and purposes, personal drivers don’t have the same kind of insurance concerns as a business. Businesses have higher liability concerns, requiring them to adhere to higher liability insurance requirements, such as protecting employees, passengers, work gear, and equipment. Whether it be your business investment or your loved ones, it’s important to get the right kind of coverage you need. At A.J. Benet Inc., we know how important it is to keep you safe. You and your vehicles deserve quality coverage from a responsive, community-based agency that always goes beyond just the policy. Call us today at 888.639.4560 for information on our New York Auto Insurance Policies.

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Avoid These Three Common Car Crash Causes

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there are three common causes of car crashes in the United States.  What is important to note is that each of these factors are completely under the driver’s control. While you can’t eliminate every risk when you’re on the road, insuring your vehicle with a New York & New Jersey Auto Insurance Policy and being mindful of these common causes will safeguard you from liability. Pay Attention According to the NHTSA, about 660,000 drivers are using cell phones or other handheld electronic devices while driving. Add to this fact the countless other distractions you may face while driving, such as playing your car stereo or talking to a passenger. While you can’t control other drivers on the road, it is important to remember that you can control yourself.  Pay attention to what you are doing so that you’ll be ready to react quickly in the event of a threat. Stay Sober Don’t drive after you’ve been drinking or using other drugs, including prescription drugs. In 2012, according to the National Safety Council (NSC), 15,000 people were killed in accidents involving impaired drivers. If you are unsure how a new medication will affect you, don’t drive until you know. Don’t Speed A driver could be tempted to think that the majority of crashes happen on the interstate. However, according to the NHTSA, this is not the case. The highest number of speed-related accidents occurs on roads with a speed limit lower than 55mph. Always drive at a safe speed, while keeping in mind the drivers around you. If someone behind you is trying to speed up, do not try blocking them. Move and let them go passed you, otherwise you could increase your risk of a crash. At A.J. Benet Inc., we know how important it is to keep you safe. You and your vehicles deserve quality coverage from a responsive, community-based agency that always goes beyond just the policy. Call us today at 888.639.4560 for information on our New York Business Insurance Policies.

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Mamaroneck Car Insurance: Should You Purchase A Diesel Fueled Car?

Mamaroneck Car Insurance: Should You Purchase A Diesel Fueled Car? Fuel efficiency is one of many pressing issues for potential car buyers. With today’s market, there are plenty of hybrid and electric car options for consumers to choose from. Both are viable options for superior mileage, but there is another fuel efficient option to consider. The diesel fueled car. Diesel fueled engines have been around since the early 1900’s but it is rare to find them in the consumer auto market. They are considered less eco-friendly, more expensive and noisier than their gasoline counterparts. Because of these difficulties, car manufacturers were less inclined to develop diesel based consumer cars. However, with improved catalytic converters and ULSD (ultra-low sulfur diesel), diesel motor technology has improved dramatically over time. The main advantage in having a diesel fueled car over a traditional gasoline vehicle is achieving better mileage. They require less fuel to provide ignition than a gasoline engine does which is why they are able to achieve superior efficiency and mileage. Another advantage is that diesel motors are engineered to be sturdier than gasoline engines. Because diesel combustion is more strenuous on the system than spark ignition, diesel engines use higher quality and tougher components. By being more solidly built, parts are less likely to be serviced which leads to a higher resale value down the road. Hybrids and electric cars have gotten the lion’s share of attention for consumers looking for fuel efficient vehicles. However, with diesel engine technology advancements, it is nice to have another option when shopping for a high mileage vehicle. Either way, no matter which vehicle you choose, we here at A.J. Benet understand how important proper Mamaroneck Car Insurance is towards protecting your vehicle. Our specialists are ready to answer any questions related to insuring your vehicle whether it be gasoline, electric, diesel or anything in between. Contact us today for more information about our Mamaroneck Car Insurance policies at (888) 639-4560.

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