Happy 4th of July!

July 4th Safety Tips (Summer Fun Safety Tips)

The 4th of July Holiday should be filled with family, friends, food, and watching fireworks. All too often, it can also be filled with high risks if you’re not careful. The most common dangers include car, grilling, and firework accidents and since we are a beach community, water activity is also a threat.

Did you know?

More people die in motor vehicle crashes on the July 4th than any other day of the year. July is the peak month for grilling-related fires. On average, 8,800 home fires occur. July 4th, 2016 saw 11,000 firework related injuries and 69% required E.R. treatment.

Ed Cantu Insurance Agency wants you to enjoy your 4th of July celebration so please follow these helpful safety tips on your holiday and for the rest of your Summer. And remember to call us when you and your family need protection.

Driving and Highway Safety

• The obvious one: Don’t drink and drive. Please. Just Don’t.

• Stay diligent with the basics (watch your speed, seat belts, blind spots, etc.)

• Stay alert, especially at night. There might be drunk drivers out there

• Minimize distractions like loud music or a car full of friends

• Drive cautiously on rural roads

• Avoid drivers that appear agitated or distracted

Grill and Bar-B-Que Safety

• Never leave your grill unattended

• Keep intoxicated people away from your grill.

• Keep a fire extinguisher nearby and let everyone know where it is and how to operate it.

• Don’t move the grill once it is lit.

• Keep children and pets away from the grill.

• Operate your barbecue on a level surface, away from your house, garage and landscaping.

• Protect the cook with a heavy apron and gloves that reach high on the forearm. Use very long-handled utensils designed for barbecuing.

• Use only lighter fluid designed for grilling when charcoal grilling. Never use gasoline or other flammable liquids, and never add more lighter fluid once the fire has started.

• Wait until the grill is cooled before storing or covering. When you’re done cooking, remember that the grill will remain hot for a while.

• Soak charcoal briquettes with water to ensure they are cool and inactive before throwing them away.

Fireworks Safety

Leave Fireworks to the professionals but if you choose to use them yourself, please follow these tips!

• It is against the law to use fireworks within most City limits so make sure they are legal in your area.

• Be sure to read and follow instructions.

• Don’t give fireworks to small children.

• Light fireworks on the ground in a fire resistant area.

• Keep a fire extinguisher nearby and always wear eye protection.

• If a firework is a “dud”, do not attempt to relight it.

• Upon disposal, douse the shells in water and throw them away.

• Store fireworks in a dry place, away from children and animals.

• Never attempt to disassemble or make your own fireworks.

• Never throw or point fireworks at any one or anything.



Don’t forget our furry friends. Did you know that July 5th is the busiest day of the year for animal shelters? Unlike people, pets don’t associate the noise, flashes and burning smell of fireworks with celebrations and a good time. Pets are terrified of fireworks and often panic at the loud whizzes and bangs they produce. Help your Pets by doing the following:

• Keep your pets indoors and turn up the TV or radio volume to reduce the firework noise.

• Don’t take them to a Fireworks Display.

• Have your pet properly identified in case they get out.

Beach and Water Activity Safety

July is one of the hottest months of the year so many families turn to water activities to beat the heat. Have fun and remember that water activities have serious risks when you aren’t careful.

• Review safe boating practices.

• Never consume alcohol while driving a boat.

• Before boating, always check that there are enough life preservers on hand for every passenger.

• Set water safety rules for your family.

• When at the beach, lake or river, never swim alone and pay attention to posted warning signs.

• Pools should be enclosed completely with a fence to restrict access to the area. Consider installing wireless outdoor sensors that will alert you via phone or with a chime inside your home if the sensors are activated.

• Keep your first aid kit near by.


All of us at Ed Cantu Insurance Agency want to help protect you and your family against know and unknown perils so call us at (361) 991-1493 when you need help. Summer time is also a great time to review and update your protection.

Because we Care

Ed Cantu

P.S. Share these helpful safety tips with someone you care for… I just did!

THEY’RE BACK.. And they are bigger than ever!

THEY’RE  BACK.. and They are Bigger Than Ever!

If you’re from the Coastal Bend or if you’ve just spent one full summer here, you know what happens after a heavy downpour.  The 17 plus inches of rain last week means it’s time to prepare for those pesky pests that always follow.  The U.S. is home to more than 150 mosquito varieties and it seems like all of them live in South Texas.  With or without the fear of the Zika virus, now is the perfect time to amp-up your mosquito-fighting skills!

Here are 5 Tips to Reduce Your Risk of being bitten by those pesky bugs:

1) Use mosquito repellent that contains DEET and follow the directions.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends products with at least 20 percent DEET concentration for the best protection.  The EPA found DEET chemical poses no health risk as long as you carefully follow the instructions printed on bug spray containers.

2) Try using a bug spray with natural ingredients.

Some plant-based sprays may also be effective for fighting off bites. The CDC says products that include oil of lemon eucalyptus can be a more natural remedy for some.

3) Wear long-sleeved shirts and pants.

Summer means outrageous heat and humidity but wearing a lightweight, long-sleeved top and a pair of pants for a day outdoors can save you from a lot of itching later on.

4) Spray your clothing with permethrin.

Permethrin spray practically creates a forcefield between you and mosquitoes, as well as some other insects. You can purchase permethrin-treated clothing at outdoors stores, or do it yourself at home. The spray helps prevent bugs from even landing on your clothes, and the treatment can withstand several machine washes.

5) Empty containers of standing water around your home.

Standing water is the ideal nesting ground for mosquitoes. It’s especially important to empty containers of standing water such as in kiddie pools and flower pot saucers.

Bonus Tip number Six. Wear white or other light color clothing as mosquitoes are attracted to dark colored clothing… they are especially attracted to black and navy blue.

Each of us at Ed Cantu Insurance Agency want to help protect you and your family against know and unknown perils so call us at (361) 991-1493 when you need help.  Summer time is also a great time to review and update your protection.

Because we Care,

Ed Cantu

P.S. When you need professional help with your pesky pests, I recommend you call our good friend Kent Nielsen at Pest Patrol (361) 852-4002.

P.P.S. Share these helpful safety tips with someone you care for… I just did!

Vital Safety Tips while Driving in the Rain

The South Texas Drought continues but heavy rain in the forecast means now is a great time to share important safety tips on how to best drive on wet roads and highways.

Safety starts with replacing old worn windshield wipers, headlights, taillights, brake lights and turn signals. Make sure they work properly and during downpours, turn on your headlights so you can see better and so others can see you.

Proper tire tread depth and inflation are imperative on wet roadways. You can check the tread depth with a quarter inserted upside down into the tire groove. If you can see above Washington’s head, it’s time to start shopping for new tires. Also check each tire’s pressure, including the spare, at least once a month… and be sure to check the pressure when the tires are cold. Whether you’ve checked your car’s equipment or not, below are important things to know.

Three important Safety Tips to follow when driving in the rain.

Avoid Cruise Control

Cruise control is a common feature for most cars. This feature works great in dry conditions, but the chance of losing control of your vehicle increases on a wet road. You may need to reduce your car’s speed by lifting off the accelerator to avoid hydroplaning (which is when your tires rise up on a film of water). It is difficult to do this when cruise control is engaged.

It is important to concentrate fully on every aspect of driving when driving in the rain. Avoiding cruise control will allow you more options when responding to a potential loss-of-traction situation.

Slow Down and Leave Room in Front of you

Slowing down on a wet road is critical to reduce hydroplaning. You should reduce your speed based on the amount of water on the roadway and how hard it is raining. At speeds as low as 35 mph, new tires can still lose some contact with the roadway.

To further reduce your chances of hydroplaning, you should slow down, avoid hard braking or turning sharply. Remember to drive in the tracks of the vehicle ahead of you, but allow motorists ample stopping distance.

How to Respond to a Skid

Even careful drivers can experience skids. If you feel your car begin to skid, it’s important not panic and remember to follow these basic steps:

  • Continue to look and steer in the direction in which you wants the car to go.
  • Avoid slamming on the brakes as this will further disrupt your vehicle’s balance and make it harder to control.

Be extra cautious in wet weather! Slow down, avoid hard braking or sharp turns and allow ample stopping distance between you and the cars in front of you.

Bonus Tip

Avoid flowing and even standing water on the road… “Don’t Drown, Turn Around”. You don’t know what could be under that innocent looking puddle of water, did you know potholes grow and multiply during the rain? It is important to make sure to slow down and avoid standing water whenever possible.

These tips may seem elementary, but since it’s been so long since we’ve seen rain in South Texas now is a great time to remind ourselves what to do. Please share these vital safety tips with someone you care for… I just did.

Because We Care,

Ed Cantu