Drew Garcia

CAL/OSHA Emergency Rule Adopted for Wildfire Smoke

Author, Drew Garcia, Vice President, Landscape Group, Rancho Mesa Insurance Services, Inc.
Author, Steve Hamilton, Loss Control Supervisor, Berkshire Hathaway Homestate Companies.

On Thursday, July 17 2019, the California Occupational Safety & Health Standards Board voted to adopt an emergency standard requiring employers to take action when air quality particulate matter measures greater than 150 and when there is reasonable expectation that employees will come in to contact with wildfire smoke. 

Top 5 Free Safety Apps for Landscape Contractors

Author, Drew Garcia, Vice President, Landscape Group, Rancho Mesa Insurance Services, Inc.

Mobile devices have become an invaluable tool for many people, on the job. They provide access to contacts, email and applications (i.e., apps) that can make work a lot simpler and safer for landscapers. We researched the top apps that boost worker safety. In no particular order, here are the top 5 free safety applications for the landscape industry.

Pollution Liability for Landscape Contractors

Author, Drew Garcia, Vice President, Landscape Group, Rancho Mesa Insurance Services, Inc.

Most Landscape Contractors believe their exposure to pollution is limited to the herbicides, pesticides, and fertilizers they apply. In order to provide some limited coverage for this it is common to see the Herbicide/Pesticide Endorsement added to the Commercial General Liability Policy. Although the endorsement extends some coverage, Contractor’s Pollution Liability would help fill the gaps created by the General Liability Policy for all of the landscape contractor’s pollution exposures. 

Higher Workers' Compensation Premiums Linked to New Employee Injuries

Author, Drew Garcia, Vice President, Landscape Group, Rancho Mesa Insurance Services, Inc.

Based on Rancho Mesa Insurance Services’ client’s information, we have been able to identify that the majority of work-related injuries occur within the first year of employment. During the first year, the majority of these claims occur in the first six months. Having a system for onboarding and training new hires is a critical component to dealing with the heightened risk of injury during this time period.

2019 Expected Loss Rates Published in California’s Updated Regulatory Filing – X-MOD Impact Inevitable for 0042 Class Code

Author, Drew Garcia, Vice President, Landscape Group, Rancho Mesa Insurance Services, Inc.

The 2019 Expected Loss Rate (ELR) for Landscaping class code 0042 was recently published at a 15% decrease or $2.97.

The ELR is the factor used to anticipate a class code’s claim cost per $100 for the experience rating period. It is not to be confused with the Pure Premium Rate (PPR). The ELR differs from the PPR in that the ELR simply measures the basic claim cost for a class code without including loss adjustment expense, excess loss load (capped at $175,000 for X-MOD purposes), and loss development.

Focus on preventing Back Injuries: Introducing Rancho Mesa’s A.B.L.E Lift Protocol and the “Field” Mobility & Stretch Program

Author, Drew Garcia, Vice President, Landscape Group, Rancho Mesa Insurance Services.

Physical work is demanding on our bodies. As the employer, what are you doing to help your employees prepare for the day’s work? Collectively, the most severe injuries come from the lower back by way of strain or sprain as a result of lifting. It’s not always the heavier objects causing the injuries. In many cases, early morning “light” lifts or movements can quickly cause a strain or sprain. Eliminating lifting exposures is the ultimate solution to limiting back strains; however, it is not always possible. Interactively training your employees to accurately lift material with proper technique is a preventive approach you can implement today to limit your businesses lifting exposure.

How To Lower Your Experience MOD by Understanding Your Primary Threshold

Author, Drew Garcia, NALP Program Director, Rancho Mesa Insurance Services, Inc. 

The Experience Modifier (i.e., experience MOD, MOD, XMOD, experience modification rating, EMR) weighs heavy on the calculation of your workers' compensation premium. With a MOD rating of 1.00 signifying unity  (i.e., the average for your industry), any MOD above 1.00 is considered adverse. Thus, any MOD below 1.00 is considered better than average. Higher MODs will debit the premium, resulting in higher workers' compensation premiums, while lower MODs will credit the premium, resulting in lower workers' compensation premiums.

Ask the Expert: Insurance Questions from the Lawn and Landscape Industry

Author, Drew Garcia, NALP National Program Director, Rancho Mesa Insurance Services, Inc.

Drew Garcia answers common insurance questions for the landscape industry. 

Berkshire Hathaway Homestate Companies and Rancho Mesa Participate in Nationally Renowned LANDSCAPES 2017

Author, Drew Garcia, NALP Program Director, Rancho Mesa Insurance Services, Inc.

The Berkshire Hathaway Homestate Companies (BHHC) and Rancho Mesa Insurance Services (RMI) teamed up at the annual LANDSCAPES 2017 convention, the Green Industry & Equipment (GIE) Expo, and the Hardscape North America (HNA) Tradeshow, in Louisville, Kentucky, on October 17-20, 2017.  

Control your Experience MOD through the MOD Doctor Process.

Author, Drew Garcia, NALP Program Director, Rancho Mesa Insurance Services, Inc.

Successfully maintaining low and predictable workers' compensation costs is a product of establishing a routine that constantly “checks and balances” your all-encompassing insurance program. Our "MOD Doctor" technique lays out a road map so we can guide you throughout the year to gain more control, become more efficient, and ultimately drive down your insurance cost; at no extra expense. What can you expect from this process?

NALP Launches New Discounted Workers' Compensation Insurance Program

The National Association of Landscape Professionals (NALP) is partnering with Rancho Mesa Insurance Services and Berkshire Hathaway Homestate Companies to offer NALP members a competitive workers’ compensation option backed by specialized landscape industry expertise and a dedicated service team.

Help Control Your Workers’ Compensation Claim Costs through Accident Investigation

Authors, Dave Garcia, AAI, CRIS, President and CEO, and Drew Garcia, NALP Program Director from Rancho Mesa Insurance Services, Inc. 

When a workers’ compensation claims occurs, in order to both control the costs of the claim and look for preventive measures to reduce or eliminate similar claims from reoccurring, it is vital that a thorough accident investigation report is completed.

How to Prevent Back Injuries in the Landscape Industry

Author, Drew Garcia, with Rancho Mesa Insurance Services, is the program director for NALP’s Worker’s Compensation Program

According to the Workers Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau (WCIRB), in the last 5 years, over a quarter of a billion dollars in back injury claims, on behalf of the landscape industry, have been paid out by carriers in California.  The back claim is by far the most costly injury at $22,000 over the last five years and the second highest in terms of frequency (behind hand, wrist and finger injuries), and the leading claim resulting in an employee's time away from work. 

Why are hand injuries the most frequent claim reported in the Landscape Industry?

Author, Drew Garcia, with Rancho Mesa Insurance Services, is the program director for NALP’s Worker’s Compensation Program

The landscape industry experiences frequent hand, wrist and finger injuries - they're three most frequent types of Workers Compensation claims.  Employees complain their personal protection equipment (i.e., gloves) limit dexterity, prohibiting finger movement, causing difficulty in performing their jobs.  As a result, employees remove their safety gloves to perform their job-related activities, and experience hand, wrist and finger injuries.