Friday, 27 December 2013

How to have a safe holiday?

Between the hustle and bustle of Christmas and arrival of winter, you may need to be aware of the safety problems the season brings. The weather begins to get chilly, you have to spend more time driving, and the pressures of socializing can also get burdensome!
Below are a few holiday safety tips for San Mateo citizens to make sure the season is safe for you and your loved ones.

Shopping safety:

Christmas is the time for celebration. Malls are packed with gift displays, luring shoppers to buy more than they can carry. Here are some helpful tips that need to be kept in mind during shopping.
Ø  Stay aware of the surroundings around you.
Ø  Park in a well-lit area, near the locked car
Ø  Never carry too much cash. Pay with credit cards when possible.
Ø  Do not get overburdened with packages
Ø  Another important suggestion is to hire a yellow cab to travel for shopping. Using a reputed transportation provider ensures that you are safe during your journey, especially if you have kids.

Pet safety:

Pets need a lot of attention during the holidays. Holiday decorations and cold weather can bring new set of issues. For instance, cats get extremely vulnerable to ice and snow and have to be kept inside at all times. Dogs, on the other hand, can be taken for supervised walks but should also remain indoors most of the time. Holiday decoration is also threatening for the animals if they chew on them.

Vacation safety:

Most people are homeward bound during the holidays. Hence, it’s only obvious that they will be targeted by opportunistic burglars. Here are some tips that must be followed:
Ø  Never publicize your vacations ahead of time.
Ø  In case your house will remain vacant, request San Mateo authorities to drive by your house once in a while to keep an eye.  
Ø  Stop any deliveries of newspapers and mail or ask a friend to collect them when you’re gone.
Ø  Make sure you leave information about where you can be contacted in case of an emergency.
Ø  Allow your neighbor to use your garbage can occasionally.
Ø  Never leave the lights on for 24 hours a day.
Ø  Turn the telephone bell down to low.

Staying safe while socializing:

Parties and lunches are the order of the season. Hence, it’s only natural that you will indulge in some drinking with friends and co-workers. To avoid drinking and driving it is best to call a cab. San Mateo boasts of several cab companies that operate twenty four hours during the holidays. Most of these providers are known to be safe as they offer trained drivers, on constant surveillance.

Tips for Visitors

If you’re visiting San Mateo County for the holidays make sure you’re aware of the traffic and drinking laws of the county. Also, when it comes to travel, authorities suggest hiring a cab or using public transportation to be on the safer side. Apart from this, being aware of your surroundings at all times and never traveling alone at night is advised.
San Mateo has a committed work force that is known for its organizational style, professionalism, and responsiveness. They offer excellent public facilities and make sure citizens and tourists are safe all year round. The authorities are particularly vigilant during the holidays. Hence, the rate of crime is much lower. However, to stay on the safer side, it is best to use yellow cabs instead of personal vehicles and also avoid driving when drunk. It is also a good idea to stay patient and alert so that no one in the family gets injured or hurt.

Wednesday, 11 December 2013

Driving Around San Mateo during the holidays

None of us like to think about our own mortality, but if we don't drive safe then there is a real chance that we might get injured or hurt someone else. Holidays are particularly the time when people become careless. Apart from increasing their chances of crashing, they also run the risk of getting a hefty fine that might put a serious dent in the holiday spending and enjoyment.
The following tips can help the citizens of San Mateo in staying safe during the festive season.

Avoiding driving alone or at night:

There are a lot of burglars and drunkards wandering the streets at night. Hence, it is best to travel with a companion. People who travel alone are usually susceptible to robbery. It is also advisable to keep all car doors and windows locked while moving in or out of the car. Setting the alarm or using an anti-theft device is a good idea.

Avoiding Drinking and driving:

Holidays are all about get-togethers and parties. It is only obvious that one may have a couple of drinks while socializing with loved ones. Here are some facts that need to be kept in mind:

How many drinks can a person have to stay under 0.05?

In general
Ø  Men can drink 2 standard drinks in an hour and then one drink every hour after the first hour.
Ø  Women can drink 1 standard drink in an hour and one in every hour after the first hour.
Drinking and driving is a complete ‘no no’. Hence, the best way to deal with this situation is to hire a taxi. Several yellow taxi providers offer 24 hour service during the holidays. In fact, they make sure there is no wait time so that clients do not have to waste a minute.
However, when waiting for the taxi to arrive, it is a good practice to keep a secure hold on one’s belongings.

Planning ahead

If planning to travel from one city to another. It is best to:
Ø  Have rest stops in a couple of hours
Ø  Plan not to speed but spare extra time for any delays
Ø  Arrange some fun activities for the kids during the trip
People who decide to travel by their own vehicles must check the condition of their automobile to make sure it’s in tip-top condition. Before taking a trip, it is advised to book the vehicle in for a complete safety check by a decent mechanic. It is also a good idea to run the vehicle through the following checklist:
Ø  All lights (including brake lights, indicators and headlights) should be working
Ø  Wipers, horn and washers should operate properly
Ø  The brake and clutch should work properly
Ø  The hoses and cooling system must work properly
Ø  The oil levels must be correct
Ø  Tires must be inflated to the pressure specific for the vehicle.
During peak holiday seasons, such as December, it's important for drivers to stay calm and patient, as extra traffic is imminent. Keeping extra time to reach a destination is a good idea. In fact, it's better to get late than to not arrive at all. It is foolish to speed to arrive early. It is also a better idea to hire a taxi instead. These cabs are driven by professionals who know the best and shortest routs around the county and are also reliable when it comes to driving safely. There are several companies in San Mateo County that offer such services at great rates even during the holidays. Their services can be used when one wants to go shopping, visit a loved one, attend a party or simply travel from one city to another. Most of these providers also have an online booking system through which cabs can be booked before hand for set dates.

Thursday, 28 November 2013

Special Recycling Programs in San Mateo

It often becomes difficult to recycle all our household wastes. There are innumerable products and all of them seem to have different rules about how, when and where they can be removed from a house. Here are some useful resources and programs that intend to simplify the recycling process for San Mateo residents.

Curbside Inc.

This company offers free door-to-door service for all San Mateo residents who want to get rid of their:

Ø  Hazardous household waste (such as, insecticides, paint, cleaning supplies, and the like)
Ø  Electronics (such as, TVs, computers, and the like)
Ø  Universal Waste (such as, CFLs, fluorescent lights, batteries)
Ø  The provider can be contacted through phone.

Christmas Tree Pick-up

Most residents have a hard time disposing off their trees after Christmas. There are several programs that run from December 26 to January 31 that intend towards picking up bulky trees. However, residents are asked to remove all decorations and stands before handing them over. Also, trees need to be placed next to the compost cart and have to be cut down if they are over eight feet.

Environmental Health Department of San Mateo

The Environmental Health Department of the county sponsors several collection centers wherein residents can dispose-off hazardous wastes.

If a person owns a small business, he/she can set up a meeting to bring in the hazardous waste for recycling. This, however, is subject to a decreased fee and there are certain restrictions on the total amount of rubbish that can be disposed in such manner. Residents need to get in touch with the environmental health department for information.

Shoreway Environmental Center

In collaboration with St. Vincent de Paul, the center accepts books, clothing, household goods, scrap metal, and car batteries for recycling and reuse. Recyclable materials and household hazardous wastes can also be delivered to the center directly for disposal.  Few of the materials that are accepted include:

Ø  Used motor oil
Ø  Latex Paint
Ø  Used oil filters
Ø  Rechargeable Batteries
Ø  Used Antifreeze
Ø  Computers
Ø  Electronic Equipment 
Ø  Peripheral Devices
Ø  Medication Drop-Off

Residents can dispose-off pharmaceuticals free of charge and safely at the drop box situated at the San Mateo Police Station at 200 Franklin Parkway.

The Transfer Station

The transfer station picks up waste from the resident’s location and transports it to a landfill for no fee.

Two Annual On-Call Pickups

The residents of San Mateo are allowed two on-call hefty item pick-ups each year. A garbage hauler can be scheduled to come pick up large amounts of waste or household items free of charge.

The Environmental Educating Center:

The Environmental Education Center of San Mateo offers guided tours for public and school groups for free. The high-tech facility is utilized for teaching the public and students about the four essential R’s:
Ø  Reduce
Ø  Reuse
Ø  Recycle and
Ø  Rot
Apart from this, broader concepts pertaining to green building and resource conservation are also taught. Residents who want to schedule a tour can easily sign up online.

Transporting it on one’s own:

In case a resident has several small items, pharmaceuticals, or related products to drop off to the closest recycling/pharmaceutical center then he/she can call up a taxi cab. Most drivers driving these cabs are well aware of the location of these centers and can easily take the customer there. Taxi cab is also a convenient option in comparison to a mass transportation service such as a bus that has fixed routes. One of the best ways to book a yellow cab is online through provider’s websites. Most reputed transportation companies offer e-booking facility for their customers.   

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

Traveling safe in San Mateo County

Like most thriving counties, San Mateo also faces its share of crime and criminal activities. Residents and tourists are asked to stay safe while police departments work overtime to ensure no mishap takes place.

Crime files:

The latest arrest was made of a convict that had committed more than twenty burglaries across the county. The 29 year old was found to possess stolen properties from robbery at the time of his arrest. Another shocking case was that of a woman who was badly injured at a side walk. She was apparently beaten up by muggers.
DUI cases also abound in the county with young adults indulging in drunken crash. In lieu of such instances, law-making bodies insist residents to keep their houses protected with security alarms and avoid walking at night or taking lonely routes during travel.  One of the best ways for residents and tourists to ensure their safety is to take yellow cabs while traveling. There are several private companies in San Mateo that offer all kinds of cabs. From luxury sedans to the classic yellow taxi, there is one to fit everyone’s budget.   

Taxi Cabs for all occasions:

Whether one needs an airport drop off or pick up, a wine tour, a city tour or just a taxi ride, most companies boast of taxi fleets comprising of only the latest models that suit different transportation needs at competitive rates. These taxis are state-of-the-art with:
Ø  Spacious interiors so that the customer can sit comfortably
Ø  Energy efficiency that helps keep the overall rates down
Ø  Inbuilt credit card machines for customer’s convenience
Ø  Inbuilt GPS system to make sure customer reaches on time
Apart from this, to ensure complete customer security, the drivers hired by most transportation companies undergo a background check. Cab drivers are made to learn the shortest and safest routes in and around the city. They also need to take driving tests and sit for regular exams. Drivers who drive rashly or are prone towards criminal behavior are laid off immediately and also reported to authorities. These companies take complete precaution to ensure their customers remain safe. In fact, drivers are also kept in touch with the ground staff at all times. This helps keep track on the cab.

How to get a cab?

Most cabs can be "flagged" or "hailed" on the street side as they approach. Another alternative is a cab stand. Taxi stands are normally located at railway stations, airports, major malls, hotels and other places where huge number of passengers are likely to be found. Another way of booking these cabs is through the internet. Most providers have functional websites that allow e-booking. All users need to do is fill in a simple form and mention the dates and time they need cabs for. Taxis are normally available on time and at the exact date.
Hiring a taxi is the best way to move around San Mateo County, especially for tourists who are not aware of the cities. They can easily be duped by mugs that are at a look out for tourists. The best way to hire a transportation company is to search for it over the internet. Reading reviews and testimonials from other users helps in narrowing down the search. Another way to go about it is to ask family and friends for suggestions. Cabs that are recommended through word of mouth are certainly worth a try. It is also good to analyze the prices so that one chooses a provider that is well priced. However, the most important criteria for choosing a company should be the amount of safety it provides.