Month: October 2019

CO-The Silent Killer

As the days continue to get colder here in the Midwest the need to kick on your furnace arises. However; that need for warmth comes an increased chance of carbon monoxide being released throughout the house, which could have a detrimental effect on you and your loved ones if it is not detected right away. So what is CO, why is it called The Silent Killer, and how can you prevent it from creeping into your home? Keep reading and we will explain.

What is CO?

CO is produced by the incomplete burning of solid, liquid or gaseous fuels from household items such as furnaces, ranges, water heaters and fireplaces. If these items are used or installed improperly, dangerous levels of CO can escape into the air and cause illness. Carbon monoxide (CO) is considered the “silent killer” because it is impossible to see, taste or smell the toxic fumes, and it can kill you before you are aware it is in your home. At lower levels of exposure, CO causes mild effects that are often mistaken for the flu. At higher levels, the effects are potentially fatal. Practicing prevention keeps CO at bay.

To protect you and your loved ones from this Silent Killer, follow these prevention tips:

  • Check your appliances to ensure that the flame color is blue. If it is orange, contact the fire department immediately.
  • Have a professional do a safety inspection annually on all of your appliances, as well as your chimney and grill, to make sure they are in safe working order and clean.
  • Operate grills outside of your home and garage.
  • Do not leave your car running in an attached garage, even if the door is open.
  • Never rely on ranges, ovens, gas grills or clothes dryers to heat your home.
  • Never operate fuel-burning items such as space heaters and lawn mowers in closed rooms.
  • If you or other family members are feeling ill frequently at home, leave for several hours to see if your symptoms go away. If so, you may all be suffering from CO poisoning.

Always consider a having an expert come and make sure all your gas burning appliances are functioning properly, especially before the winter months hit! Also, in addition to a smoke detector, install a CO detector on every level of your home. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for installation and place away from furniture and curtains to get accurate detection results.

Share this article!

Winter Is Coming, Is Your Vehicle Ready?

Ohhhh the weather outside will soon get frightful… so let’s make sure your vehicle stays delightful… or else it will not go… let’s prepare, let’s prepare, let’s prepare!!

Preparing your vehicle for winter normally isn’t something that is on the top of your to-do list, but it is extremely important, especially when it comes to your safety while driving. The last thing anyone wants is to breakdown in the middle of the highway or in the middle of nowhere, only to find out it all could have been prevented. Check out these auto insights that will help you prepare your vehicle for winter weather!

Did You Know?

Cold temperatures make it difficult for engines to work properly, snow limits tire traction and salt causes rust and gravel pits on the exterior paint. This is why it is a good idea to protect your car during cold months by winterizing your vehicle before the beginning of the season.

Consider these car winterizing suggestions before the temperature drops:

  • Place snow tires on your vehicle –Snow tires will increase traction and reduce your chances of slipping on slick surfaces.
  • Check your tire pressure- Cold temperatures cause tire air pressure to drop.
  • Check your car battery – Extreme temperatures can cause your vehicle’s battery to operate at less than 50 percent. If your battery is over three years old, have it tested.
  • Check the antifreeze mixture – The ideal mixture of antifreeze and water in your radiator is 50:50.
  • Check your four-wheel drive system for malfunctions – Check that your system engages and disengages properly and does not make any unusual noises when you start it.
  • Change the oil in your engine and check the viscosity grade – To reduce the risk of problems with your engine oil, place thinner oil in your engine before the cold weather season.
  • Have belts and hoses inspected
  • Inspect wipers and refill wiper fluid
  • Place a roadside emergency supply kit in your car

Safety First

The winter may be hard on you: Dry skin, brittle hair and an increased risk of colds and the flu. It is also hard on your vehicle. Take the necessary steps to protect your car against the cold to ensure that it will last the entire season long! And don’t forget to scrap your windshield!

Share this article!

Breast Cancer Awareness Month!

Ugh. It’s that time of year again, where pumpkin spice and pink ribbons take over department/grocery store shelves! Whether you are a lover of all things pumpkin and pink or not, this time of the year is very important, it serves as a reminder that an annual mammogram can truly be the spice that could save a woman’s life!

Did You Know?

According to, all women are at risk for breast cancer—research estimates that 1 in 8 or about 12 percent of women will be diagnosed with invasive breast cancer at some time in their lives. Read on to learn about causes and risk factors, and how to identify and prevent breast cancer.

The most common indication of breast cancer is discovering a lump in the breast or underarm area. Other signs include swelling, skin irritation/dimpling, nipple pain/abnormalities, redness or scaly skin and discharge from the nipple.

To detect breast cancer, physicians may use the following tests:

  • Mammogram – a breast X-ray
  • Biopsy – the removal of cells or tissues so they can be viewed under a microscope
  • Estrogen and progesterone receptor tests – to determine the levels of each hormone
  • MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) – a procedure that uses a magnet, radio waves and a computer to make a series of detailed pictures of inside the body

The chance of recovery and the treatment options depend on many factors including the stage of cancer, how fast the tumor is growing, hormone receptor levels, and a woman’s age. The four standard types of treatment used for breast cancer are:

  1. Surgery, ranging from a small lump of tissue being removed to an entire breast (mastectomy)
  2. Radiation therapy
  3. Chemotherapy
  4. Hormone therapy

Healthy Hints

Medical experts attribute the development of breast cancer to a combination of both unknown and known factors. An extensive list of these factors can be found at:

Share this article!

The Cost Of Employee Turnover

Well, there goes another one. Another what? Employee!

Turn over rates are on the rise and can be costly to your company. Let’s say your company has 3 entry level positions open, you go through the interview process and after process of elimination, you have selected your candidates. Within 30 days you have them hired and trained. At this point you are thinking that all is going good, but then it happens, they start calling in sick, they don’t show up on time or at all and the next thing you know, you are back to square one. This happens all the time, especially this day and age when the job market is screaming for employees. So how do you stop this from happening?! Well, let’s start with the cost factor… and then we will talk about how to lower the turnover rate.

High turnover rates can be incredibly costly to an organization, making employee retention vital to success. While established employees can offer valuable insights based on their experiences in the organization, when they leave the organization they take all of that experience with them, forcing resources to be used on finding and training a replacement. The cost of turnover can be divided into two types: direct and indirect.

  • Direct costs include those tied to replacement costs such as advertising the open position, and interviewing and testing candidates; and the costs of training new hires.
  • Indirect costs include factors that cannot be measured directly but are costly nonetheless, such as lost productivity and knowledge, and lower morale as a result of turnovers.

While the exact cost of each turnover varies, estimates suggest that replacing an employee could cost as high as 200% of the annual salary of that departing employee.

Keeping Turnover Low

Employee turnover is often caused by insufficient employee engagement. While compensation is typically a factor in turnovers, the lack of opportunities to advance and a stressful or otherwise unsatisfactory work environment are also contributing factors. Focus on improving company culture, pay and benefits, and providing a clear path for career development. Offering the ability to submit suggestions and complaints anonymously can encourage otherwise
intimidated employees to share their insights. Additionally, conducting exit interviews with departing employees can offer valuable insight into the exact cause of turnovers and what can be improved to increase employee retention. Any recurring complaints indicate areas for close examination and improvement.

Let us help you create strategies to help over come turnover rates. Contact us today!

Share this article!