Most common claims for homeowners


The most common causes of homeowner insurance claims from 2009 to 2015 in America are exterior wind damage – 25%; non-weather-related water damage (failure in plumbing systems or appliances) – 19%; hail damage – 15%; weather-related water damage (rain, melting ice, snow) – 11%; theft – 6%. While circumstances in South Africa might not be identical, have a look at how we can prevent making claims for damage to our home.



Sick note scam costs billions



South Africa’s economy lost between R12-billion and R16-billion through illness-related absenteeism and lost productivity in 2016, according to Occupational Care South Africa, which promotes ethical behaviour in healthcare. False sick notes are proving to be a monumental problem, with about fifty doctors being investigated by the country’s Health Professions Council. First-time offenders could be fined up to R10 000 for each fraudulent note; thereafter, they will be criminally charged.




Meet the deadline for cover to continue


Sugar cane and Timber renewals have been sent out to all clients.  Sugar renewals need to please be updated and returned to Crop Division by midnight of 31 March 2017 and Timber renewals by midnight of 30 April 2017 for cover to continue. Any changes to timber schedules received prior to premiums being raised will be actioned before raising the premium.



Craftwork for kids



The Safire team is always ready to serve a worthy cause, and volunteers attended a workshop at Safire House to make educational toys from waste products such as egg boxes and bread bags for Singakwenza. This Hilton-based organisation (its name means “we can do it”) provides sustainable early childhood educational programmes in economically disadvantaged communities. The wife of Crop Division’s Gareth Smallbones, Linda, also did her bit by swimming the Midmar Mile for this non-profit organisation.


Early breathalysers


When Prohibition was repealed in late 1933, authorities soon realised that alcohol was a major cause of people dying on the roads: in Chicago, drunk-driving deaths quadrupled in the first six months of 1934 compared to the year before. By 1938, a biochemist at Indiana University, Dr Rolla N. Harger, had developed a device that was tested by the Indiana State Police. When people asked Harger the name of his device, he jokingly said the “Drunkometer” – a name that stuck. There was also the Alcometer, developed in the early 1940s by Leon Greenberg and Frederic Keator, and the Intoximeter, used by the LA Police Department. All compared the ratio of carbon dioxide and alcohol in a person’s breath to pre-mixed alcohol solutions, which were then translated to equivalent measurements in the blood.


Kitchen sound effects


The Planet Earth II TV series by David Attenborough currently being flighted in South Africa made use of the latest filmmaking technology and invested millions of pounds in developing pioneering filming techniques. Six teams filmed for over two thousands days, making 117 trips to 40 countries to source incredible visual material. However, the team headed to the kitchen for certain sound effects. The crack of bones heard when animals are shown devouring prey was recreated by snapping celery sticks, while the sound of predators tearing meat from a carcass is actually the sound of an orange being peeled.


Safire Berg 100 reminder

The annual Safire Berg 100 MTB race, one of the toughest single day events in the country, takes place on 18 March this year, winding through scenic countryside from Himeville and ending in Nottingham Road. The 100km race’s unique format sees the start and finish alternating between these KZN Midlands’ villages each year.




Get on your bike and ride!

Safire is sponsoring the 40km phase of the 10th Husqvarna Classic Mid-Illovo Challenge on 30 April. With 100% of proceeds invested in the community along the route, it’s the type of family-friendly and community-minded event we support. Enter via the ROAG website, and check out the Husqvarna-Classic-Mid-Illovo-Challenge Facebook page.




Safire King of the Seas Classic 2017

The popular, family-focused South Coast fishing competition, the Safire King of the Seas Classic, will take place from 26-28 May 2017 at Pumula Beach, so make a note to keep this weekend free if you are a keen fisherman/woman! Great prizes will be up for grabs and a good time is guaranteed for all.


Wind warning



This video clip shows how close police officers in the USA state of Wyoming came to being crushed, when high winds blew over a huge truck a few weeks ago – right on top of their patrol car.




$305-million – amount that JSE-listed SAPPI intends to invest in some of its operations in Europe and the USA.




R49-billion – amount of savings held by South African stokvels, which number around 800 000.




$3-trillion – the size of the American healthcare industry, the largest in the world.


415 000 – estimated number of elephants remaining in Africa. China has committed to banning all domestic ivory trade and processing by the end of 2017.




2.4 million – number of hectares of maize planted by South African farmers this season, an 18% increase over 2016.




236 – number of vehicles sold in Venezuela, a nation of 30 million people, in November 2016, indicative of the economic crisis in what is now the world’s worst economy.



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