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Beth
Beth

Miss Whippy
Location: Cornwall & Oxford
Member Since: 3rd Jun 2003
Total posts: 1262
Posted:I am a member (though not for much longer) of the 'extreme sports' society at uni. I posted a while back about their attitude towards firebreathing and how they believe it to be 'perfectly safe' and are teaching it willy nilly to freshers.

I had been asked a few days ago to perform with them for a show at one of the colleges in oxford. Performance is actually tonight. I said yes on the condition that they provided me with information regarding their insurance. Got an email back 'we do not presently have insurance'.

Oh dear.... they are doing a performance, two 15 min slots in front of a load of university students and lecturers.... they dont have ANY kind of insurance for this. Is it illegal to perform in public without insurance? I'm getting even more worried about this society and feel, as a student and a fire spinner, that i should say something.

I cant believe they think that fire performance is perfectly safe and theres no need for insurance and they havent had an accident so believe they never will... its worrying frown


Aim high and you'll know your limits, aim low and you'll never know how high you could have climbed.


onewheeldave
Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: sheffield
Member Since: 28th Aug 2002
Total posts: 3252
Posted:It's not all all unusual in the UK for people to do paid fire gigs with no insurance.



From my experience of University juggling/fire societies doing this kind of stuff, they tend not to be insured.



As far as I know it's not actually illegal to perform without insurance; but I may be wrong on that.



I don't know what happens if an accident occurs, an audience member is hurt, and the performers don't have insurance- it would be good if someone here who has knowledge of this could post something, as it's very relevant to this issue.



Despite the fact that I don't do much fire stuff anymore, I do have insurance, as I need insurance to do my other workshop based stuff and so paid extra to get covered for fire insurance as well.



Obviously it's much better for everyone, for performers to be insured; unfortunatly in the UK, insurance is over-priced and seems to be virtually impossible to get for groups (as opposed to individuals).



I remember your previous post about this particular groups attitude to fire and fire breathing- if they still have that attitude, I don't think they should be performing, whether they've got insurance or not.


"You can't outrun Death forever.
But you can make the Bastard work for it."

--MAJOR KORGO KORGAR,
"Last of The Lancers"
AFC 32


Educate your self in the Hazards of Fire Breathing STAY SAFE!


Vixen
Vixen

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Oxfordshire/Wiltshire
Member Since: 10th Jan 2004
Total posts: 3276
Posted:That is really irresponsible and definatly not the attitude for them to have.. have you discussed this with the head of the society? xxx

tHeReS gOoD aNd EvIl iN EaCh InDiViDuAl fIrE, iDeNtIfIeS nEeDs AnD fEeDs OuR dEsIrEs.


Birgit
Birgit

had her carpal tunnel surgery already thanks v much
Location: Edinburgh
Member Since: 27th Jan 2005
Total posts: 4145
Posted:our juggling society currently has no insurance, so if we perform we don't do fire. period. if anything happens, even if it's just a drunk idiot running into the space and getting hurt, it IS something you have to know might happen, and if you're not insured, I don't think it's illegal, but you can be held responsible and sued. Add to that the attitude of your responsible guys ("nothings going to happen"), and I don't think you'd stand a chance in court if that came out.

When we do fire we tell everyone it's not an official juggling event and it's at their own risk, though we'll help with safety and explaining things like spinning off.

Do they have insurance for the other extreme sports they do?? Anyways, suggest applying for a society grant to cover fire insurance, you might be successful. There was a thread a while ago about finding insurance companies that'll cover fire, I think the pricing was fairly reasonable given what MIGHT happen.


"vices are like genitals - most are ugly to behold, and yet we find that our own are dear to us."
(G.W. Dahlquist)

Owner of Dragosani's left half


Beth
Beth

Miss Whippy
Location: Cornwall & Oxford
Member Since: 3rd Jun 2003
Total posts: 1262
Posted:I emailed the president of the society but hes the worst out of all of them. His name is Ding, ridiculous name, and hes one of the wannabe 'cool' middle aged guys. In my email i told him exactly what i thought of his lack of insurance and his attitude to fire performance, i wasnt rude but i was pretty blunt with him. I asked to be taken off the mailing list and not to be a part of the society anymore. I dont want anything to do with them but it doesnt stop me worrying about what they're up to.

Aim high and you'll know your limits, aim low and you'll never know how high you could have climbed.


Sethis
Sethis

Pooh-Bah
Location: York University
Member Since: 16th May 2005
Total posts: 1762
Posted:I don't have insurance, and to the best of my knowledge (I may be wrong) our Juggle Society doesn't have it either. We do fire though, generally in a field somewhere.

We've only done it once with fire as an actual booked performance, and we were outside, with everyone else inside looking out through the windows.

I'm fairly certain that it can't be illegal, otherwise YUSU, the Porters and so on would never have allowed us to light up. I'm currently debating the merits of getting individual insurance so I can put up posters advertising my spinning for private events (parties mainly). But I will *not* perform as an individual without insurance, because it's just silly.


After much consideration, I find that the view is worth the asphyxiation.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I may disagree with what you have to say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.


onewheeldave
Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: sheffield
Member Since: 28th Aug 2002
Total posts: 3252
Posted:One thing to bear in mind for University juggling/spinning societies, is that they probably don't wnat to get lumped into the category of 'extreme sports' by the university.

This almost happened with Sheffields juggling club, which, to sustain itself, charged students 5 membership/year + 1/session- a very reasonable rate which ensured a healthy level of membership.

If they had been classed as an 'extreme sports' society by the university, annual membership would have had to go up to at least 30/year, to cover the necessary insurance.

It was considered that this would probably finish off the club, so, instead, they totally distanced themselves from fire juggling/spinning. Obviously, many members do fire off there own backs, but it's officially not a society activity.


"You can't outrun Death forever.
But you can make the Bastard work for it."

--MAJOR KORGO KORGAR,
"Last of The Lancers"
AFC 32


Educate your self in the Hazards of Fire Breathing STAY SAFE!


Dunc
Dunc

playing the days away
Location: The Middle lands
Member Since: 19th Aug 2003
Total posts: 7263
Posted:I'm sure the individuals could insure themselves and still perform as a group if it's too hard/expensive to get group insurance. They must be earning enough to cover the 140 or so annual fee and would they be able to ask for funding help as a uni extra curicular type thing?



I agree whole heartedly with Dave



Written by:
I remember your previous post about this particular groups attitude to fire and fire breathing- if they still have that attitude, I don't think they should be performing, whether they've got insurance or not.





No insurance will make them safe, Beth you've done the right thing honey hug



Have you thought about maybe asking your union to help fight the insurance issue to protect their many other members enjoying these performances?


Let's relight this forum ubblove


Birgit
Birgit

had her carpal tunnel surgery already thanks v much
Location: Edinburgh
Member Since: 27th Jan 2005
Total posts: 4145
Posted:Beth, try and get all the responsible spinners into a new society next year smile That's the best way to go, to still have fun and protect the ones that are grown up enough to play with fire! And you can make them agree to any safety policies you think appropriate before performances, too, so if someone oversteps the line they've attended a safety meeting before and know what they were doing.

"vices are like genitals - most are ugly to behold, and yet we find that our own are dear to us."
(G.W. Dahlquist)

Owner of Dragosani's left half


onewheeldave
Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: sheffield
Member Since: 28th Aug 2002
Total posts: 3252
Posted:Birgits advice is good- universities are excellent when it comes to setting up juggling/spinning clubs- all you need are a small number of signitures from interested people, and enough committed individuals to form a committe (usually 3 or 4).

You'll then get either a suitable room/hall provided, or an allowance to susidise hall rent.

And it's of real benefit to students who want an alternative to the usual university sports/societies.

I'd recommend emphasising the juggling/spinning/other stuff (unicycling etc) rather than fire; then have fire nights just for those interested and committed, as an independant activity.


"You can't outrun Death forever.
But you can make the Bastard work for it."

--MAJOR KORGO KORGAR,
"Last of The Lancers"
AFC 32


Educate your self in the Hazards of Fire Breathing STAY SAFE!


LazyAngel
LazyAngel

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Cambridge UK
Member Since: 29th Jul 2004
Total posts: 2895
Posted:one thing to consider, I'm not sure of the details in this case but some university juggling groups are actually covered by the the insurance of the university itself. i.e at UCL we were allowed to spin fire in the quad as long as we took safety measures, such as having a fire extinguisher on hand at all times, a metal fuel container with a lid, and making sure that everyone wore suitable clothes and a hat when spinning

Because ActiveAngel sounds like a feminine deodorant

Like sex, I'm much more interesting in real life than online.

'Be the change you want to see in the world around you' - Ghandi


Beth
Beth

Miss Whippy
Location: Cornwall & Oxford
Member Since: 3rd Jun 2003
Total posts: 1262
Posted:There already is a circus society at brookes and i'm on the committee but the president is lazy and we havent had any meetings. I wont be able to start another one until next september and probably won't be supported as there already is a circus society.

We're allowed to play with fire in uni grounds but my point in this thread is that one society is doing public fire performances (mainly fire breathing and probably 1 ok spinner and 1 spinner who has probably never picked up poi in their life) outside university grounds without any kind of insurance or interest in getting insurance. They dont even take a fire blanket or fire extinguisher on them when they perform because 'nothing is going to happen, it is perfectly safe'.


Aim high and you'll know your limits, aim low and you'll never know how high you could have climbed.


dream
dream

currently mending
Location: Bristol
Member Since: 15th Jul 2003
Total posts: 493
Posted:As well as poss bein covered by the uni as a society, if a college has booked fire performers without insurance, they'd quite easily be able to add it to whatever insurance thay already have for the event. It's something we did at a balls a few years back.

He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. And if you gaze long into an abyss, the abyss will gaze back into you.

Nietzsche