The Municipal Lost Property Office has received during the month of October a total of 4.274 objects, highlighting 807 purses and wallets, 552 jewelry and costume jewelery items, 199 bags, 93 handbags, 183 belts, 185 mobile phones and 229 computer items (computers, USB sticks, electronic books, tablets, batteries and chargers).
Likewise, a total of 391 glasses, 203 keys, 109 backpacks, 61 umbrellas, 42 suitcases, 55 books, 127 headphones, 6 briefcases and 326 pieces of clothing have arrived at the Municipal Lost Property Office of the city of Madrid.
In addition, up to 154 assorted objects have been received such as a fan, crochet hooks, mats, cervical pillows, hearing aids, a scale, a crib barrier, thermal bags, boxes with different objects, a calculator, a wheelbarrow, baby carriages, shopping carts, posters, a bicycle helmet, motorcycle helmets, electronic cigarettes, a dog leash, a painting, a step counter, a travel cot, a dataphone, lottery tickets, an alarm clock, a ladder, a dental splint, guitar, tools, cervical massager, school supplies, mosquito net, crutches, cooler, consoles, selfie stick, pool stick, hockey stick, garment bag, heart rate monitors, air purifier, a paddle tennis racket, paddles, an iron chair, a beach chair, a baby chair, envelopes with various content, an umbrella, a snuff box, thermometer, thermos, a ukulele, a vape and a walkie talkie.
These objects may be removed by those who prove their owners at the office itself, located at Paseo del Molino, 7 and 9, in the district of Arganzuela, from 08:30 to 14:00, Monday through Friday, except for the December 31, which will remain closed.
27 kilometers of shelving
The Lost Property Office of the Madrid City Council stores in the 27 kilometers of shelves of its facilities about 88,600 lost objects in the municipality of Madrid, mostly from different means of transport.
A figure that has been greatly affected in the last year and a half by the pandemic. Whereas in 2018 and 2019 more than 70,000 objects were collected in the office each year, with an average of almost 200 objects per day, in 2020 the number was practically reduced by half, with 34,700 objects. A trend that is maintained in the first six months of this year with 15,883 items deposited.
Among the 88,585 objects that the office guards are purses, wallets, suitcases, briefcases and clothing, as well as musical instruments, pictures, pens, canes, crutches, shopping carts, baby chairs, fishing rods, toys or watches and Electronic objects such as tablets, laptops and mobiles are increasing more and more. Cash also arrives at the office. Thus, in the last two years, 100,000 euros have been made available to the municipal coffers once the legal custody period of two years has elapsed. In the first half of this year, more than 55,000 euros have been deposited.
Nearly 15,800 objects from public roads, taxis, post office, metro, trains, airport, buses, sports facilities and SAMUR-PC have arrived at the Town Hall’s Lost Property Office in the first six months. In this period of time, 2,730 objects have been returned, 2,590 to the owner and 140 to the finder, well below the years of ordinary management in which nearly 10,000 objects were returned.
The largest number of objects deposited in the office comes from the entities with which the City Council has signed collaboration agreements: AENA, Metro, EMT, RENFE and Correos. In fact, in a normal year, around 50% are lost objects at Barajas Airport delivered by AENA, around 20% are found in the metro and approximately 10% come from the EMT and the Post Office. Less than 5% are objects found in RENFE, in taxis or found on public roads.
In the first five months of the year, the Lost Property Office has assisted almost 16,000 people, of which 6,323 have personally approached these offices and 9,579 made inquiries via email.
The objects that are received are registered in the computer program indicating origin, day of delivery, place of loss, description of the object and data of the owner and the person who found it, if any. If there is any information that allows the location of the owner of the object, it is communicated by the means that is recorded: telephone, email or notification to the address.
Thus, every month a generic list of the objects delivered to the Lost Property Office during the previous month is published in the Official Gazette of the Madrid City Council (BOAM) and on the Edicts Board. The period in which the object is at the disposal of its owner is two years from said publication. If the owner does not pick it up within that time, the object would belong to the person who found it, who is called the finder. If the latter does not withdraw it either within a month, it becomes municipal property.
When the object is already owned by the City Council, it can be used for the use of other municipal services. Thus, for example, some suitcases are used by the Municipal Police for dog training.
Objects are also destined for NGOs and other non-profit institutions. Recently, an agreement has been signed with an NGO that develops health and educational projects in Honduras and another will soon be signed with an NGO for the reuse by the disadvantaged population of Zimbabwe of prescription glasses and sunglasses deposited in the office. In addition, on June 14, an agreement was signed with Basurama, an entity that develops artistic projects by recycling products to which it wants to give a second life.
A third option is for unclaimed objects that have become municipal property to be auctioned. For the last four months of this year, an auction of watches and objects made of gold, silver and costume jewelery with more than 3,000 pieces is scheduled.
In the case, the cash deposited that is not recovered by its owners or finders, goes to the municipal coffers for the benefit of all the people of Madrid. Disposal and recycling procedures are applied to objects without value that are not accommodated through any of these routes through the Environment and Mobility Area.
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A hockey stick and a billiard stick, a dataphone, a ukulele, a dental splint … more than 4,200 new “forgetfuls” arrive at the Madrid Lost Property Office | Gacetín Madrid