Strange but true insurance claims

1. "I work in the claims team for a UK supermarket. A customer bought a bunch of bananas with a hidden spiders nest. The eggs hatched and spiders infested the house. We sent pest control out who confirmed the spider as Brazilian Wandering Spiders (deadly), I had to arrange a hotel for the family, fumigation of the house and follow up checks. The total was into the tens of thousands, all because they bought a pack of bananas."

2. "A very wealthy individual who was also an art collector and spent a lot of money at art auctions. He bought so many paintings he ran out of wall space in his mansion and had to rent a warehouse to store all the paintings that wouldn't fit in his home. Then he ran out of room in the warehouse. This led to him storing approximately $4 million worth of paintings, one of which was from the 16th century and valued at $500,000 by itself, in a garage directly below an old toilet. Inevitably one day the toilet overflowed, flooded the garage, and destroyed all the art there. He was issued a seven-figure cheque."


Overzealous retail staff

"I've had a couple of instances of till jockies getting unduly (IMHO) "involved" with my purchase and wondered if this is how the surveillance society begins," ponders a reader. " How about that carving knife you just bought at the Warehouse - stabbing anyone today ma'am? The bottle of turps from Placemakers - planning an arson, sir?"


Voucher worth a try

A reader found this aged and tattered - yet carefully stored - prize voucher when going through some old papers. "It has to date back to the early triathlon days of the 1980s when Tony's Restaurant was a regular supporter of the events. It was in an old wallet of my husband's, clearly awaiting a good opportunity to take me out (on the cheap) one night. As I note the voucher has no expiry date on it, one wonders if they would still honour it?"

Wee tip at the urinal

On a recent trip to China Terry came across this set of instructions at a urinal. "Another translation was 'A step closer for a cleaner environment'. We could definitely do with the latter translation in many of our loos," he says.

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