Preventing Film Equipment Theft – Tips & Tricks

Posted by Grant Patten on May 7, 2019 6:38:08 AM

All this lovely gear was stolen! Don’t let this be your gear. All this lovely gear was stolen! Don’t let this be your gear.

Thanks to cooperation between the FBI, the US embassy and Argentinian federal police, this massive haul of film production gear worth ~$3M was recovered in September 2018. The thieves had apparently targeted equipment in Hollywood and other US cities and then smuggled it into Argentina. As of May 2019, four people have been arrested in the US and 17 suspects have been identified in Argentina.

Film Equipment Theft – Prevention Tips

We’ve provided some tips & tricks for how to guard your film equipment, as well as some information on how to insure your equipment so you are protected in any worst case scenario situations.

1. Exterior/Location Filming

  • Key individuals should be responsible and accountable for transporting equipment from trucks and trailers to the filming set/location
  • There should be a tracking process established for logging equipment in/out when transported between destinations
  • Securely store equipment when not in use, especially hard-to-replace items like custom props, sets and wardrobes
  • Station security personnel within sight of exposed equipment, ideally at all times
  • Heighten security presence whenever filming in crime-ridden neighbourhoods

2. Interior Filming

  • Always favour buildings that have a central security alarm system, and check with building facilities that the system is actually running properly
  • Favour buildings that have security guard personnel on site
  • The building ideally has a concierge who facilitates logging in/approval of visitors
  • If you need to store equipment in the building overnight, double-check that the room is secure and inform security personnel about it

3. Employee/Crew Theft

  • Have written policy in place informing cast/crew that it is unacceptable to take any objects from set as “souvenirs”; clearly communicate policy to cast/crew
  • Conduct reference/background checks on all new employees/crewmembers
  • All employees/crewmembers should wear highly visible ID badges while on set
  • Make use of sign-in/sign-out sheets for entering/exiting locations
  • Conduct inventory checks on regular basis

4. Vehicles (including rental cars, vans and trucks)

  • Ensure vehicles transporting valuable equipment are as nondescript as possible (don’t call attention to the vehicles)
  • Any equipment stored in a vehicle should always be locked and kept out of sight (e.g., covered with blankets)
  • Ideally have multiple drivers available to limit the number of extended stops and take turns monitoring the vehicle during stops
  • If overnight: ideally stay at reputable hotels; hotel parking lots should be well-lit and monitored by cameras and security guards

5. Air Travel (planes carrying production equipment)

  • Always have a clearly marked luggage tag and have a card with emergency contact information placed inside the luggage/container
  • Whenever possible, carry some valuable items onto the plane instead of checking them in, such as laptops and smaller cameras
  • Maintain an inventory listing the shipped items, along with planned shipping itinerary and equipment serial numbers

Consider Film Equipment Insurance – DigiGear

There seems to be no published information on whether or not the equipment involved in the Hollywood-Argentina smuggle was insured. If it wasn’t insured, no doubt, the owners of said equipment were likely kicking themselves after this massive theft occurred.

Avoid a similar fate by insuring your film equipment with Front Row under a DigiGear policy.

RELATED POSTS:

INSURANCE FOR THEFT OF CAMERA AND FILM EQUIPMENT

THEFT FROM VEHICLE: PHOTOGRAPHY INSURANCE EXPLAINED

HOW TO CALL A WRAP ON CLAIMS

CITATIONS:

https://news.sky.com/story/huge-haul-of-stolen-hollywood-film-equipment-found-in-argentina-11498283

Chubb PDF T3-FilmEqTheft-3-19 https://www.chubb.com

Topics: Film equipment insurance, Film Insurance, Film insurance broker, Film Equipment, digigear

What does online DigiGear Equipment insurance actually cover?

Posted by David Hamilton on Aug 2, 2016 4:03:51 PM

DigiGear Insurance Coverage for Film Equipment

This unique offering allows owners of camera equipment, sound, lighting and other film equipment the opportunity to get quick quotes in 20 seconds and purchase insurance for their gear in less than five minutes, 365 days a year, 24/7.

All equipment is covered for: theft, damage, fire and loss of use. This short animation explains the coverage:


Wait for the $50 discount code at the end!

The policy term is for 12 months.

Rental equipment insurance coverage is also available.

The online link ensures industry-low prices:

  • $10,000 equipment coverage: costs $80, plus a fee
  • $2,000,000 annual location liability coverage: costs $500
  • $1,000 deductible for gear

Available to Canadian equipment owners at: https://digigearinsure.frontrowinsurance.com

About: Front Row Insurance Brokers Inc. is an independent insurance broker that works on behalf of the Canadian arts and entertainment industry to provide insurance for the lowest possible cost. Should a claim occur, Front Row ensures that clients receive the money they are owed per the insurance policy, as quickly as possible. Front Row has offices in Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal, Nashville and Los Angeles.

RELATED LINKS:

Film Insurance 101 & How to Protect Your Film Project

Film Production Insurance: Why it is needed

Pre-Production Insurance

Film Production Insurance

How the Premium is Determined

Short Film Insurance

DigiGear Insurance

Props/Sets/Wardrobe Insurance

E&O Insurance

DICE Insurance

Third Party Property Damage

Crew Vehicles

Umbrella Vs. Excess Liability

Commercial General Liability

Negative Film / Videotape and Faulty Stock

Workers Comp

Cast Insurance

Extra Expense (EE)

Foreign Locations

Claims

Topics: Film equipment insurance, Film Equipment, Camera Insurance

Production Equipment and Props/Sets/Wardrobe Insurance Explained

Posted by Mike Groner on Jul 20, 2016 3:36:37 PM

PRODUCTION EQUIPMENT INSURANCE:

Covers against all risks of direct physical loss, damage or destruction to cameras, camera equipment, sound and lighting equipment, grip equipment, portable electrical equipment and generators, mechanical effects equipment and similar miscellaneous equipment against direct physical loss or damage to said property.  This coverage also typically includes loss of use of property of others for which the renter or producer is legally liable.

The limit of coverage for production equipment should be sufficient to cover the replacement cost of ALL equipment being used on the project.

Equipment owner operator insurance offered for Canadian film producers.

Most equipment rental houses will include in their contract a statement confirming renter’s requirement to fully insure the equipment in renter’s possession. 

Did You Know?

If you are using an individual’s personal equipment, and your intent is to provide coverage for it while being used on the production, a legal contract must be executed to define your obligations as the insurer will look for your legal obligation to trigger coverage.

 

Wardrobe

PROPS, SETS & WARDROBE (PSW) INSURANCE:

Provides coverage on props, sets, scenery, costumes, wardrobe and similar property against all risks of direct physical loss, damage, or destruction during the production.

There are typically restrictions or sub-limits under props/sets/wardrobe coverage for boats, train, planes, antiques, artwork.

Did You Know?

The insurance company will look for your legal obligation to provide coverage, so if your intent is to insure property being used for PSW, then we recommend that a legal contract be executed to define your obligation.

To obtain coverage a no obligation insurance quote for your project, please click on one of the links below:

Short-Term Production Insurance:Up to 14-days with no minimum premium. Coverage can include Commercial General Liability, Film Equipment Insurance, Props/Sets/Wardrobe coverage, Automobile Physical Damage and more.

Film Production Package For a Single Production:Film Production Package for a single production: features, television series, documentaries, and more.

Blanket Annual Production Package:    A convenient way of administering your insurance if you anticipate multiple productions in the next twelve months. This type of policy covers Documentaries, Corporate Videos, Commercials, Educational Films, Music Videos, Shorts, and more.

RELATED LINKS:

Film Insurance 101 & How to Protect Your Film Project

Film Production Insurance: Why it is needed

Pre-Production Insurance

Film Production Insurance

How the Premium is Determined

Short Film Insurance

DigiGear Insurance

Props/Sets/Wardrobe Insurance

E&O Insurance

DICE Insurance

Third Party Property Damage

Crew Vehicles

Umbrella Vs. Excess Liability

Commercial General Liability

Negative Film / Videotape and Faulty Stock

Workers Comp

Cast Insurance

Extra Expense (EE)

Foreign Locations

Claims

Topics: Film equipment insurance, Film Production Equipment, props sets wardrobe insurance, insurance for film set

Filmmakers: You May NOT be Covered under a Homeowners Insurance Policy

Posted by David Hamilton on May 23, 2016 12:18:22 PM

Equipment_insurance_banner.jpgYou arrive back at your apartment to find your door pried open and your camera, sound and lighting gear missing. You take out your phone and call your insurance broker to report the claim under the homeowners policy that you purchased. An adjuster is assigned. The claims adjuster does a  web search and sees  that you have credits on IMDB for various productions. Because you are hired with your gear as a part of your weekly rate, your gear is now considered “commercial” equipment and as such, not covered by your homeowner’s insurance policy which is intended to cover “personal” film gear that is not used for commercial purposes.

You tell the adjuster that you only worked  twice in the last 12 months on two low budget music videos and made less than $300. The adjuster shrugs, “It doesn’t matter, even if you shoot a birthday party for 60 minutes for $50, you are a professional and your gear is  considered commercial and is no longer covered under a homeowners policy”.

This is a difficult, pricey lesson that is better learned before there is a loss. Our experience tells us that many professionals assume they are covered by their homeowners insurance policy when in fact they are not.

If you use your gear to make money, check your insurance policy and make sure your coverage is appropriate.

We have created a 5-minute online insurance solution called DigiGear:

Available at:  https://digigearinsure.frontrowinsurance.com

The policy term is for 12 months and coverage is provided throughout Canada and the USA.

All equipment is covered for replacement cost for:  theft, damage, fire and loss of use. Rental coverage is also available.

The online link ensures industry-low prices:

  • $10,000 equipment coverage: $80 plus a fee
  • $2,000,000 location liability coverage: $500.  Liability covers property damage and bodily injury to third parties. Pays legal fees too.
  • $1,000 deductible for gear

For a limited time get $50 off.  Use code: $50discount at: https://digigearinsure.frontrowinsurance.com

"We wanted to make the insurance process easier, faster and cheaper for musicians,” said David Hamilton, President of Front Row “Given that there is no need to speak to a broker and an insurance company underwriter is not involved, the cost to process an on line film equipment  insurance policy is much less  and we have passed the savings onto the gear owner. The savings is expected to be 30% compared to standard film equipment policies. Although the DigiGear policy is online, we are still available to answer questions by e mail or over the phone if required.”

Topics: Film equipment insurance, Camera Insurance, digigear

Online Insurance for Owners of Camera, Sound & Lighting Gear

Posted by David Hamilton on May 2, 2016 4:59:45 PM

Man holding film camera

Vancouver, Canada – Apr. 28, 2016 Front Row Insurance Brokers Inc. is excited to announce the launch of their new online DigiGear insurance program.

This unique offering allows owners of filming equipment the chance to get quick quotes and process policy documents in less than five minutes, 365 days a year, 24/7.

“Visitors to the site that purchase a policy can sleep easy knowing their gear is covered on and off the set all year. The equipment is covered worldwide including while in transit to a job. The site also offers general liability. Office contents, earthquake and flood coverage are offered at no extra cost.“ said David Hamilton, President of Front Row in Vancouver. “This is a disruptive product for owners of camera, lighting and sound equipment because of the much lower cost and ability to purchase a policy in minutes without having to speak to a broker. The expected savings should average 30%. Commercial use of camera, lighting and sound equipment is not covered under a typical homeowners policy: our online DigiGear insurance is an inexpensive and fast solution to this problem.”

Available to Canadian equipment owners at:  https://digigearinsure.frontrowinsurance.com

The policy term is for 12 months.

All equipment is covered for: theft, damage, fire and loss of use. Rental equipment coverage is also available 

The online link ensures industry-low prices:

  •  $10,000 equipment coverage: $80, plus a fee
  • $2,000,000 annual location liability coverage: $500
  • $1,000 deductible for gear

The online program for film gear owners follows Front Row’s lead over the past two years into online offerings for short term filmmakers, photographers and musicians. “We wanted to make the insurance process easier, faster and cheaper for film gear owners,” said Hamilton, “Given that there is no need to speak to a broker and an insurance company underwriter is not involved, the cost to process a camera insurance policy is much less online and we have passed the savings on in the form of a less expensive policy. Although the DigiGear policy is online, we are still available to answer questions by e mail or over the phone if required.”

About: Front Row Insurance Brokers Inc. is an independent insurance broker that works on behalf of the Canadian arts and entertainment industry to provide insurance for the lowest possible cost. Should a claim occur, Front Row ensures that clients receive the money they are owed per the insurance policy, as quickly as possible. Front Row has offices in Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal and Los Angeles.

Topics: Film equipment insurance, Film Production Equipment, Film Equipment, Camera Insurance

QU'EST-CE QU'UNE POLICE D' Assurance ANUELLE DE FILM?

Posted by Meghan Stickney on Aug 13, 2014 3:27:00 PM

describe the image

 

C’ est une  police film d’assurance  pour gagner du temps et de l'argent si vous prévoyez plusieurs projets au cours des 12 prochains mois. 

La police d’assurance «dice» signifie et couvre:

Documentaires, vidéos corporatifs , commerciaux,  films éducatifs. Il couvre également les Clips et le court métrage.

Exclut *: budget de plus 150.000 en  long métrage ou  / Télévision 

- Série télévisée ou épisodes

- Productions avec des périodes de tournage de  + 90 Jours.

(* sauf indication pour approbation  et, dans certains cas, une prime supplémentaire s'applique)

 

Une police assurance anuelle de film offre une couverture préétabli pour un an pour votre bureau et tous vos productions - à l'exception des films  et des séries avec des budgets plus de $ 150,000.

Nous allons vous fournir  des certificats en blanc pour l'année, ce qui vous permet de reserver  les endroits et louer du matériel à la dernière minute .

Responsabilité civile générale est moins cher avec une police  annuelle  parce que vous ne payez qu’ une fois par an et couvre l'ensemble de vos projets dans une période de 12 mois. Beaucoup moins de travail et à moindre  coût de pour la couverture de chacun de vos projets.

Un police  typique d'un producteur avec  250.000 dollars  de productions annuelles  est la suivante:

 COUVERTURE  
 LIMITE $ 
 Film négatif / Videotape   250,000
 Stock défectueux, camera , Développement     250,000
 Accessoires, décors et costumes    200,000
 Matériel loué  divers  750,000

 Matériel divers vous appartenant

(prime supplémentaire s'appliquera) 

 Comme Requis 
 Responsabilité pour dommages aux biens  2,000,000
 Frais supplémentaires   200,000
 Contenu de bureau  100,000
 Débiteurs  25,000
 Argent et valeurs  25,000
 Dommages causés à des véhicules  150,000 par véhicule  
 Responsabilité civile générale   2,000,000

 

Coûts: 

  • Une prime de dépôt débute à 1500 $. 

  • Vos coûts finaux de productions brutes pour toutes les productions réalisées pendant la durée de la police  sont signalés à la Société dans les 30 jours suivant l'expiration ou la résiliation de la couverture. 

  • La prime annuelle gagnée est calculée en appliquant le taux par 100 $ de coûts de production réels bruts établis à la date de création de la police
  • Une prime minimum de 1500 $ sera applicable quels que soient les termes de couverture. 

  • Les primes peuvent être financés sur l'année pour aider votre flux de trésorerie. 

  • Nos taux  varient  en fonction du rapport Film / Vidéo, types de productions et le nombre de productions annuelles estimées. 

  • La couverture de responsabilité générale (pour couvrir les lieux de tournage  contre les dommages matériels ou corporels causés par votre équipe) est en sus. Par exemple, une limite $ 2,000,000 coûterait $ 750 par an; une limite $ 500,000  coûterait $ 1000 par an. 

Appelez-nous ou envoyez-nous un courriel pour une soumission  une description de la couverture demandée ainsi que  de plus amples informations. 

EN SAVOIR PLUS

 

Topics: Film equipment insurance, Film insurance broker, Entertainment Insurance Broker, Commercial Production Insurance, Documentary Insurance, DICE Insurance, Industrial Films, Educational Film Insurance

Obtaining Insurance for your Short Film

Posted by David Hamilton on Dec 30, 2013 3:59:00 PM

Insuring your short film is a fast, easy process WITH Front Row


Our Short Term Production Insurance program can include the following coverage for up to 15-days: (note that this is for Canadian based producers only)

  • Insure $10,000 of rented equipment for $99
  • Insure $50,000 of rented equipment for $137
  • Insure $100,000 of rented equipment for $184
  • Insure $250,000 of rented equipment for $236
  • Short Term Rented Equipment Limits up to $1,500,000

Get Your Online Quote Now

The locations that you film at will usually want to see proof of your location liability insurance before the property owner will give you access to film. Liability insurance will repair any property damage that your crew causes at a location. This insurance will provide you with a lawyer if you are sued.

The equipment coverage will pay to repair or replace lighting, cameras and other gear that you damage.

The equipment will be covered anywhere in Canada or the USA. You will be covered even if your gear is lost or stolen while travelling.

We will need the following detail in order to provide a quotation:

  • Who is the named insured? This can  either be you personally or your company if you have one.

  • What is your address and e mail.

  • What is the approximate value of the gear that you are renting?

  • How many minutes will your finished project be?

  • How many days will you be filming?

  • Where will you be filming?

  • What is the budget of your shoot?

  • Will there be any stunts or special effects?

We can also provide you with a year of coverage if you have multiple projects and we can cover your larger projects such as a feature or a series.
Click here to get covered now! ▸

RELATED LINKS:

Film Insurance 101 & How to Protect Your Film Project

Film Production Insurance: Why it is needed

Pre-Production Insurance

Film Production Insurance

How the Premium is Determined

Short Film Insurance

DigiGear Insurance

Props/Sets/Wardrobe Insurance

E&O Insurance

DICE Insurance

Third Party Property Damage

Crew Vehicles

Umbrella Vs. Excess Liability

Commercial General Liability

Negative Film / Videotape and Faulty Stock

Workers Comp

Cast Insurance

Extra Expense (EE)

Foreign Locations

Claims

Topics: Film equipment insurance, Short Film Insurance, Film Insurance

Film Production Insurance & Mechanical Devices on Set

Posted by David Hamilton on Dec 10, 2012 9:42:00 AM

MECHANICAL DEVICE SAFETY ON FILM SETS

Mechanical device film set

If a mechanical device or an articulated set is used in a production, the film insurance cost can be minimized if the production company ensures that:

1.            The device or set is capable of safely performing the functions for which it is used

2.            Workers operate the device or set in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions, safe work practices, and the requirements of the Regulation

3.            The device or set is properly inspected, tested or maintained

If a production company requires that a mechanical device or articulated set to be created for a production, the production company is considered the supplier of that device or set. As a supplier, the production company must provide directions for the safe use of the device or set and must ensure that the device or set is safe when used as specified. Such directions could be developed in consultation with a qualified person such as a professional engineer.

A specialized film insurance broker is best able to present the risks associated with your film production to the film insurance underwriter to ensure you receive the best coverage and premium for your production.

Front Row Insurance Brokers are specialized Film Insurance Brokers. Please call us if you have any questions.

The above information is  based on WorkSafe – Focus on Safety – Safe Work Practices for Film and Television Production in B.C. (2001 edition)

Topics: Film equipment insurance, Film Insurance, Film insurance broker, Film Production Insurance Premiums, Film Insurance claims, Film Production Equipment

Film Production Companies and Camera Cars: Reducing the Risk

Posted by David Hamilton on Nov 26, 2012 5:42:00 PM

The Camera Car in Filmmaking

Camera car

The camera car should  be engineered specifically for film and television production. The insert-camera car operator has the authority to suspend operation of the vehicle if they believe the vehicle is unsafe in any way.

Safety requirements when working with insert-camera cars:

  • Inspect the car – including the brakes, tires, electrical system, and towing equipment – before and after each use
  • Qualified, experienced workers must rig the car
  • When using an insert-camera car at night, install two portable tail lights on the towing vehicle
  • Do not transport crew members or equipment not directly needed for the shot sequence
  • Do not ride on the tow bar or on the exterior of the towed vehicle. Crew members may ride on a towed camera platform specifically designed for this type of work, as long as they use the necessary restraints and harnesses
  • In most cases, insert-camera cars require a police escort during operation 

A specialized film insurance broker is best able to present the risks associated with your film production to the film insurance underwriter to ensure you receive the best coverage and premium for your production.

Front Row Insurance Brokers are specialized Film Insurance Brokers. Please contact us if you have any questions.

Topics: Film equipment insurance, Film Insurance, Entertainment Insurance, Film insurance broker, Entertainment Insurance Broker, Film Production Insurance Premiums, Film Insurance claims, Film Production Equipment, entertainment package insurance, Film Production Companies, film insurance underwriter

Film Production Companies and Lighting Safety

Posted by David Hamilton on Nov 19, 2012 11:05:00 AM

Setup Film Set Lighting Safely

Film set lights

  • Use appropriate fall protection equipment when setting up lighting
  • Ensure that all lighting fixtures are supported so that they will not fall, i.e. Use safety wire or chain to suspend fixtures
  • Ensure that all lighting stands are property weighted with sandbags
  • Cover arc-type lamps such as HMIs in wet weather to prevent rain from entering the unit and ballast
  • When using open-faced lighting units, provide protection from shrapnel in case the bulb explodes
  • Ensure that scaffolds or other metal grids that are used to support the lighting are grounded
  • Before using any grounded equipment, test for continuity between the ground pin on the plug and the metal parts of the lighting equipment
  • Before relamping or repairing a light, turn it off and disconnect it from the power source

A specialized film insurance broker is best able to present the risks associated with your film production to the film insurance underwriter to ensure you receive the best coverage and premium for your production.

Front Row Insurance Brokers are specialized Film Insurance Brokers. Please call us if you have any questions.

The above information is  based on WorkSafe – Focus on Safety – Safe Work Practices for Film and Television Production in B.C. (2001 edition)

Topics: Film equipment insurance, Short Film Insurance, Film Insurance, Entertainment Insurance, Film insurance broker, Entertainment Insurance Broker, Film Insurance claims, Film Production Equipment