Post Letter: Palmer Fest arson a reminder of risk assessment

News Section:

Because of the recent and heavily publicized house fire at this year’s Palmer Fest, we, as a university, have several lessons to learn. The first — and most important — has already been touched on in many Post articles, columns and letters, so there’s no need to talk about the disgrace of our university, devaluing of degrees, etc.

What I want to talk about is renter’s insurance and the illusion of invulnerability.
We are young, generally healthy and pretty reckless as a whole. We often feel and act indestructible at times. What we need to remember is that tragedy does happen, as shown by the misfortunes of those unlucky few whose house caught fire a few weekends ago on Palmer Street.

I am not saying we need to change our lifestyles as a whole (unless you are the person who started the fire, but that is another story), but we do need to be mindful of the risks. I am not an insurance salesman, but I do highly recommend every off-campus student purchase renter’s insurance. You may always be very careful of your actions, but do you trust everyone around you?

Usually, for around $100 per year you can insure your belongings in a rented space, and have the peace of mind that your life won’t have to change dramatically solely because of the negligence of others. Imagine trying to continue life at OU if you lost every physical item you owned in Athens.

Once again, I am not peddling a useless product, but rather giving a public service announcement for your benefit.  

Will Johnson is a junior studying actuarial science and economics and president of Gamma Iota Sigma, OU’s insurance, risk management, and actuarial science fraternity.

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