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#1 Scott Jason Gill

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Posted 21 March 2011 - 04:18 PM

http://pollstar.com/.../21/760414.aspx

The reality of needing good insurance and always working safe. No idea what the background story is on this. Looks as though the jib arm either broke or was somehow derigged (I have no jib knowledge). The arm doesn't pivot down, but falls.
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#2 Lawrence Karman

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Posted 21 March 2011 - 04:28 PM

http://pollstar.com/.../21/760414.aspx

The reality of needing good insurance and always working safe. No idea what the background story is on this. Looks as though the jib arm either broke or was somehow derigged (I have no jib knowledge). The arm doesn't pivot down, but falls.



Not really Steadicam relevant.
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#3 Charles Papert

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Posted 21 March 2011 - 08:27 PM

Not specifically, but the reality of why production insurance is important is relevant to all. I've done a lot of small shoots in the past year and have had to very recently explain to a producer why we should have insurance on an upcoming micro-budget shoot--his response was "we didn't have it on the last one, and that video got shown everywhere". When I recounted what the result could have been, the next sentiment was "we'll just tell everyone to be careful".

This doesn't apply to those working on jobs where an insurance cert is part of the regular process, but to those doing indie shoots where it is not part of the deal. Understand that without contracts and insurance in place, you and your Steadicam are potential weapons, and if you were to hit anyone with them or fall into anyone, you could be personally liable and find yourself subject to a lawsuit for damages. So yeah--that little shoot you do with your friends with a 7D at a party could turn into a real headache if a drunk girl walks into the mattebox and sustains an eye injury, and it turns out her dad is a bigtime personal injury lawyer...
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#4 PeterAbraham

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Posted 22 March 2011 - 09:18 AM

Cannot agree with Charles more. When Operating full-time for a living, I carried a $ 2 million liability bond. Production insurance and clearly written contracts are a must. If you do not have a clear and solid deal memo, it is worth it's weight in gold to have an attorney create one for you.

The relevance is absolute. We- like jib ops- are near people and groups, using a heavy piece of machinery sometimes at high speeds. Careful planning and prudent use do not always prevent incidents.

We stress safety above all else.

Best to all,

Peter Abraham
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#5 Lawrence Karman

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Posted 22 March 2011 - 09:58 AM

Don't really want to get into a debate but this is like posting a video of a car crash and telling everyone it's important to have liability insurance. If you own a crane you better have liability insurance, even if you are provided a cert by production. That goes for anything you rent. I have a personal umbrella policy for liability. Do we have to point this out to all?
And please give me some anecdotal evidence of a Steadicam operator that has been sued for injuring someone with their rig and I'll shut up for ever.
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#6 invalid username

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Posted 22 March 2011 - 10:16 AM

Not trying to offend anybody by looking for the humor in this, but if you're looking for a laugh you should listen to the things people are saying in the background.

Two of my favourites were "I knew this would happen. I'm psychic, you know" and "who the f*** thought it'd be a good idea to put a camera on a giant beam? Seriously that's just an accident waiting to happen. F***ing ameratures."
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#7 Scott Jason Gill

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Posted 22 March 2011 - 10:58 AM

Don't really want to get into a debate but this is like posting a video of a car crash and telling everyone it's important to have liability insurance. If you own a crane you better have liability insurance, even if you are provided a cert by production. That goes for anything you rent. I have a personal umbrella policy for liability. Do we have to point this out to all?
And please give me some anecdotal evidence of a Steadicam operator that has been sued for injuring someone with their rig and I'll shut up for ever.


I'm sorry if offended you posting this on our site, but it is related to our industry. I just thought it was interesting and a bit of a good reminder to me, next time I'm doing a crane step-off! If you're not interested in anything in our industry besides Steadicam, I'd suggest not clicking on the "Jib Collapse" subject line.

Mods are free to move this to 'off topic' if I've incorrectly used precious General Discussion thread space.
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#8 Charles Papert

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Posted 22 March 2011 - 11:49 AM

I'm sure there are a lot of people here who aren't aware that Doc (aka Lawrence) is a principal of Active Remote Systems, one of the top Technocrane rental outfits, so he knows a little about cranes.

Doc, what is a no-brainer for you is likely not the case for a sizable percentage of our readership who have never stepped onto a union set and regularly work in environments where there is no production insurance. At the same time, there are more privately owned jibs and cranes than ever before, thanks to their relatively affordability these days. Do you think that the same person who buys a 22 foot long arm for a few thousands bucks is likely to spend the same amount as that on insurance? I've seen the build and design quality of these guy's stabilizers--say no more.

Obviously there are folks out there who have taken care of business. But I guarantee there are many more who haven't. So yes, I think it is relevant to bring this sort of thing up.

As to someone being sued because they were hit by a Steadicam, you know it's going to happen eventually. Plenty of mild injuries have occurred because of this and someday someone will make a point of being a dick about it. Up until a few years ago we could have been talking about the dangers of crane stepoffs and say "well, no-one's fallen off yet". Sadly that's no longer the case.
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#9 Lawrence Karman

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Posted 22 March 2011 - 12:18 PM

Look guys, I'm not offended by this post and sorry if I offended you by mine. It just didn't seem Steadicam related to me and I thought this site was about all thing Steadicam. But hey, post whatever you want.

And Charles, as a person who owns a house (or at least makes mortgage payments) I have an umbrella policy that covers me against personal liability. I also insure my equipment. But I would venture a guess that most Steadicam owners who might have insurance that covers them against loss or theft do not have a liability policy. And you know, if I didn't have all this other stuff I probably wouldn't either.

If this is a discussion about only working for companies that have insurance or the importance of it, then I agree. Otherwise, as I tell people everyday on set, don't stand under the crane.
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#10 RonBaldwin

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Posted 22 March 2011 - 12:30 PM

Being under cranes have always worried me...especially under a techno on an insert/tow vehicle. You always wonder how it's rigged (both camera and grip-wise). The last time I was on an insert car the grips ratchet strapped the techno to the truck. I questioned it and found myself instantly on the key grip's shit list. I also worry about the cars with the jib arms on the roof and no extra cage or structural support for the occupants.

rb
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#11 Janice Arthur

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Posted 22 March 2011 - 02:43 PM

Hi all;

Recently I was trying to save some cash and thought about not renewing my Liability policy but on the advise of an attorney he said it was good to have.

He said, "Not having it could be catastrophic to your business and you."

I always had it just in case I backed into someone's aquarium or some other thing but as shoots get smaller and more money guarded on every job, they're going to look for scapegoats if something goes wrong. They're going to try to blame anyone they can and I don't want to be in the way of that and unprepared. I don't announce it and I don't present the certificate to anyone.

Its the kind of thing you just keep in your pocket if all hell breaks loose.

I've heard that you never want to use your liability policy because once you do its really really hard to get another policy.

JA
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#12 Lukas Franz

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Posted 22 March 2011 - 06:03 PM

Guys, for your information: in Switzerland almost everyone has a private liability police. I do have one, too! So, if production doesn't cover anything, you're still moving your rig with a good feeling and quiet conscience. And if ever something will happen, you won't ever think twice anymore.

My two cents.
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#13 Nicholas Davidoff

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Posted 23 March 2011 - 03:01 AM

This thread seems to be evolving into a liability insurance discussion. Since we're on the subject, how much is an average yearly (or monthly) liability policy for an operator in the U.S?
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#14 Robert Starling SOC

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Posted 23 March 2011 - 10:46 AM

General Liability coverage is among the least expensive insurance coverages available (about $400 USD I think is what I pay). It's conceivable through no direct fault of our own that someone could be injured by our gear or actions.

GL doesn't just cover that direct injury, it also covers those Personal Injury lawyers who simply sue everyone they can associated with the moment / production.

Funny story: I was shooting Criss Angel and he decides to go ad-lib out into the crowd of 400 people and we get swarmed. The Director says stay with him and my utility is fighting to make us a path while I'm rolling and holding people back with my right hand. This little boy about 7-8 runs in to meet Criss and takes a full and hard hit to the forehead on my arm; it was a womper! Just as he grabs his head and starts to cry, I'm thinking lawsuit. Then the long and merciless arm of his mom reaches through the crowd, yanks him by the shirt and smacks the crap out of him saying "I told you not to go up there". :blink: :blink: :blink: She proceeded to kick his butt and we were eaten by the swarm.

No Steadicam equipment was damaged in the making of this moment.

Robert
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#15 Janice Arthur

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Posted 23 March 2011 - 12:00 PM

Hi all;

Loved Robert's story. Nothing like a good Mom wacking a kid to make you laugh.

Just paid mine and its $425. year. Can remember the limits but our pals Walter P. Dolle did the policy. It was low 300s last year but as we know stuff's gone up.

So a deal.

JA
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