News for Constituents

Pennsylvania Number Three in Collisions with Deer

Ranking third among states experiencing deer collisions, Pennsylvania drivers have a 1-in-63 chance of colliding with a deer or other large animal, according to a 2017 insurance industry report.  Analysts expect a 6.3 percent increase this year over 2016 collisions

Deer-involved crashes are not considered at-fault.  A surcharge cannot be added to the policyholder’s premium, as a result.  Contact the PA Insurance Department’s Consumer Services Bureau online or at 1-877-881-6388 for related problems. 

Insurance industry reports tie increased collisions between vehicles and deer during autumn to outdoor enthusiasts, from hikers to hunters, and the breeding season when yearling bucks seek new territory and adult bucks roam the home range seeking doe. 

Flu Season Precautions

Pennsylvania experienced nearly 71,000 confirmed cases of flu and 148 deaths from flu complications during the last flu season, increasing the need for exercising precaution, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Health

Protect yourself and your loved ones this flu season by getting vaccinated and taking specific preventive actions: 

  • Wash hands with soap and warm water or an alcohol-based hand-sanitizer.
  • Cover nose and mouth with a tissue when coughing or sneezing and throw away used tissues. Cough or sneeze into your upper sleeve, as recommended by the Centers for Disease Control. 
  • Keep hands away from your face, eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Disinfect frequently-used surfaces like doorknobs, light switches, TV remotes, and countertops.
  • Avoid personal contact with those experiencing symptoms of the flu.
  • Remain at home until at least 24 hours after your fever subsides without the use of fever-reducing medicine.

Flu symptoms come on quickly and may include a fever, headache, fatigue, dry cough, sore throat, nasal congestion, and body aches.  Populations at particular risk include the very young, older Pennsylvanians, pregnant women, and those with chronic health conditions.

 

Prevent Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

Homes with wood-burning fireplaces and stoves, gas-fired fireplaces, appliances, grills, generators, and motor vehicles are susceptible to the release of deadly carbon monoxide as a result of the incomplete burning of combustible materials, according to the Pennsylvania Office of State Fire Commissioner (PAOSFC). 

Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning, often mistaken for the flu, include nausea, headaches, dizziness, disorientation, fatigue, and death, if undetected.  On average, carbon monoxide poisoning claimed the lives of 73 Pennsylvanians annually between 2009 and 2013. 

The PAOSFC recommends installing carbon monoxide detectors and changing the batteries in the fall and spring when resetting your clocks and replacing smoke alarm batteries. 

 

Managing Increasing Charitable Giving Requests

Charitable giving requests seem to pop up online and appear in our mailboxes at an ever increasing rate and may not always be legitimate, according to the Pennsylvania Department of State.  More than 11,000 charities and 462 professional fundraisers are registered with the Bureau of Corporations and Charitable Organizations

The Bureau maintains an online charities database that separates fundraising expenses from management and general expenses, allowing the potential donor to see the percentage of dollars spent directly on program services. 

Be sure to take a look at the Enforcement and Disciplinary Actions to ensure your choice for charitable giving is worthy of your contribution.  You may call the Bureau toll-free within the Commonwealth at 1-(800)-732-0999 or at 1-(717)-783-1720 for additional assistance in locating or interpreting the information.  You may also file a complaint upon suspicion of unethical activity by a charity. 

Love Your Dog, License Your Dog

Did you know your dog must be licensed by January 1 of each year if you are a Pennsylvania resident? 

Dog owners may purchase an annual license for $8.50 or a lifetime license for $51.50.  The annual fee for spayed or neutered dogs is reduced to $6.50 annually or $31.50 for a lifetime.  Older adults and those with disabilities may apply for a discounted dog licensing fee. 

Purchase your dog license from your local county treasurer or, in the case of Philadelphia residents, the dog license must be purchased through the City of Philadelphia’s licensing agent, Animal Care and Control Team of Philadelphia or one of that organization’s authorized license retailers. 

The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture Bureau of Dog Law Enforcement reminds dog owners, a current license is the fastest way to have a lost dog returned home rather than having it become a statistic among the more than 5,000 dogs in shelters across Pennsylvania. 

Scenic 2018 Calendars Available

Order your 2018 Pennsylvania calendars now and be ready to flip the page on 2017. 

Find striking wildlife photos along with helpful hints for hunting and the outdoors in the 2018 Pennsylvania Wildlife Calendar.  Proceeds of all products sold through the Outdoor Shop support the preservation, conservation, and management of Pennsylvania’s wildlife resources and habitats. 

Enjoy vintage artwork from the PA Angler & Boater Magazine featured throughout the PF&BC’s 2018 collector calendar.  Discover lovely outdoor scenery in photographs from across PA captured in the 2018 State Parks Calendar.  Each purchase raises dollars for conservation and recreation.