Personal Lines Perspectives: Roof Protections, Distracted Driving, and Liquor Liability as a Host.

Is Your Roof Protecting You From the Elements?

The health and construction of your home’s roof are vital for protecting your home and its contents. Wind, rain, hail and snow can slowly degrade your roof. To promote the health of your roof and protection of your home, inspect your roof every spring and fall for the following common signs of wear and tear:

  • Cracked, curling or missing shingles
  • Debris-filled rain gutters
  • Asphalt debris on the ground or in rain gutters
  • Worn areas around chimneys or other fixtures
  • Drainage or downspouts that angle toward the foundation
  • Outside light shining through to your attic

If you spot any of the above signs of wear and tear, it may be time to repair or replace your roof. Follow these steps in order when re-roofing yourself, or hire only licenced roofing contractors for repairs, replacement or advice on appropriate roof materials:

  1. Remove tree branches that hang over the roof.
  2. Remove the existing roof cover.
  3. Inspect the roof for damage, and replace damaged sections.
  4. Re-nail the roof deck.
  5. Anchor gable end outlookers.
  6. Seal the roof deck against water.
  7. Install flashing.
  8. Apply the roof cover.
  9. Apply roof vents.

Contact us today to learn about your home insurance policy and to make sure you’re covered.

What You Risk When Driving Distracted

Distracted drivers are one of the biggest threats on the road today, leading to hundreds of thousands of injuries and fatalities each year. While cellphones are the most common source of distracted driving, anything that takes a driver’s eyes off the road can be incredibly dangerous for themselves and those around them. The following are the top four risks you face when driving distracted:

  1. Distracted drivers are 23 times more likely to be involved in a collision while texting and four times more likely while talking on the phone while driving.
  2. Drivers could face hefty fines or demerit points now that all provinces in Canada, plus the Yukon and Northwest Territories, have bans on using cellphones and hand-held electronic devices while driving.
  3. Even when looking, distracted drivers can fail to see up to 50 per cent of the available information in their driving environment.
  4. A recent study shows that nearly 80 per cent of collisions and 65 per cent of near-collisions involve some form of distracted driving up to three seconds prior to the event.

Fines for Distracted Driving

Penalties for distracted driving vary across provinces and territories, going as high as a $1,275 fine and six demerit points. The following is a list of the penalties for distracted driving across Canada:

  • British Columbia: $543-$888 fine, 4 points
  • Alberta: $287 fine, 3 points
  • Saskatchewan: $280 fine, 4 points
  • Manitoba: $672 fine, 5 points
  • Ontario: $615-$3,000 fine, 3-6 points
  • Quebec: $300-$600 fine, 5 points
  • New Brunswick: $172.50 fine, 3 points
  • Nova Scotia: $233.95-$578.95 fine, 4 points
  • Prince Edward Island: $572-$1,275 fine, 5 points
  • Newfoundland and Labrador: $100-$400 fine, 4 points
  • Yukon: $500 fine, 3 points
  • Northwest Territories: $322-$644 fine, 3 points
  • Nunavut: No current law

Your Liquor Liability as a Social Host

Hosting a social event that involves serving alcohol can potentially make you liable for any damage or injuries resulting from that alcohol consumption. In the event that you are serving alcohol in your home, here’s what you need to know about your liability and what you may need to do in the event of a claim.

Serving alcohol on your property to guests who are already intoxicated may make you legally responsible for their actions. Large parties, such as weddings and staff parties, increase your risk, as it is much more difficult to monitor alcohol consumption of so many guests.

Liquor liability extends to:

  • Anyone serving alcohol past the point of intoxication
  • Anyone owning or responsible for the premises of the event
  • Employers at staff events where employees are consuming alcohol
  • Sponsors of any potentially dangerous activities

In the event that a claim is filed against you, it is very important that you contact your insurance representative immediately and record all relevant information, including names and contact information for witnesses to the incident or those with information about it. Do not admit liability, and direct all conversations or questions from the claimant to your insurer.

Contact CMB Insurance Brokers today to learn more about your liquor liability and how you can reduce your risk the next time you host a social event.