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Lost and found Missing glass eye? Contact Swiss railways

More than half of the objects left on Swiss trains were reunited with their owners

(Keystone)

A glass eye, wedding dress and fakir costume were among the 127,000 items passengers left behind on Swiss trains last year. 

Wheelchairs, prostheses and dentures counted among the unusual objects on the list, which was dominated by clothes and mobile phones. 

Large sums of money were also found but the most valuable misplaced object remains a 1727 Stradivarius violin left behind in 2012. It was estimated to be worth €2.4 million (CHF2.6 million) at the time. 

More items of clothing – blamed by the railways on unpredictable weather – as well as a rise in passenger numbers were responsible for the increase in forgotten items (112,000 in 2015 and 110,000 in 2014). The top ten objects left behind include coats and jackets, mobile phones, suitcases, bags, purses, keys, hats and spectacles. 

Slightly more than half of the objects were reunited with their owners. Purses, wallets and mobile phones stood a greater chance of being returned than coats due to identification issues. 

Since 2005, the railways have handed over lost items - after a certain period of time - to a private companyexternal link to be sold on. Items worth less than CHF50 ($51.5) are handed over after a month and the rest after three months. 

The private company pays an undisclosed fixed amount to the railway company, as well as a percentage of its turnover. According to a representative of the Swiss Federal Railways, the amount does not cover the costs of processing lost items. 

swissinfo.ch and agencies

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