Insurance in a muddy field


There can be few subjects which provide a wider insight into life than Insurance. Don’t let anyone convince you that it is boring. Over the years I have been involved in covering risks as diverse as insuring a belly dancers belly against injury, whilst dancing at a top London Turkish restaurant, to covering the Polish Chamber Orchestra and the Pope against their non appearance at a concert taking place within the Vatican and being transmitted to South America.
At the request of a TV Company, making a film about Burmese, I insured the horse that the Queen was going to ride for the last time at Trooping of the Colour against the risk of not being able to take part and the film not being able to be made.
There is almost no where that film crews, or at least their equipment, has not been. There is just about nothing that has not been insured. Rockets sending space stations into orbit, oil platforms being taken halfway across the globe to be put in position or the tallest skyscraper buildings. The list is endless.
Perhaps the oceans are one of the few places left for man to explore, at least on earth.
Film crews have scaled mountains, trekked across deserts, explored the forests and generally, put their lens in any orifice they can find.
Yet ponder the thought that one of the least explored areas are the Oceans. 71% of the planet is water, of which 97% is salt water. We are told that with global warming the puddle will get bigger.
It was only the other day that I discovered that yet another Ocean had appeared, without my even noticing it. My school days taught me that the Oceans were the Artic, Atlantic, Indian, and a little matter of the Pacific. I now find that we have another, the Southern Ocean, so all you natural history film makers, with a sea dog attitude and salt in your veins, there is one you may have missed.
The fact is that the International Hydrographic Organisation decided in 2000 that four Oceans were not sufficient and created another, they named "Southern".
One does ponder why they had to introduce a 5th Ocean when the Pacific at 155,557,000 sq km and in places 35,800 deep is surely sufficient to keep all the worlds’ marine film makers busy for the immediate future.
What has this got to do with anything you may ask, but when I tell you that our clients don’t even have to go and visit the good old briny, to have a claim involving water you may see the oblique connection.
The answer to the question is camels, or to be more precise, camel racing. Having packed their bags and loaded up their kit my highly skilled clients headed off to film a camel race. Not much to do with water you may ask, other than being called ships of the desert.
However my clients are special, in fact they are all very special as they have nerves of steel an eye for a great shot and are happy to see old ladies across the road.
I am sure they considered the location carefully. Perhaps they wanted to be so close to the camels they could smell their breath, as they roared past.
However, whatever was in the mind of my intrepid cameraman as close on this occasion turned out to be too close for comfort. When the train of highly tuned camels sailed past, my intrepid little film maker, found his location was only a spit away from a large puddle, and guess what, camels have rather large feet and if you hit a puddle of water with a hairy foot as big as a 5 ltr saucepan, it makes a very big splash.
Perhaps on reflection he should have found a tortoise to film, at least he would have stayed dry.
Is insurance ever boring, never.

Tags: insurance | film crew | iss019 | N/A
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