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  1. #1
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    Ask MTBR: How long do you leave something in the lost and found?

    At a coffee shop I go To 6 days a week, I just noticed an item of interest in the lost and found. It is a Jandd pannier. Today is the first day I saw it. They leave the lost and found out in the open. Usually there are a bunch of old coats and stuff in it.

    Just this past weekend on a grocery run, I was thinking I could use another pannier. So my question is, what is the ethical amount of time to let the bag sit in the lost and found? I am thinking about a month, then I shouldn't let it get thrown away.

  2. #2
    jl
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    climb
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    Ask the management how long they keep things, reserve for the end of that time with the knowledge you'll give it back to the original owner if they ask for it.

    I wouldn't blindly take it. That's the same as stealing... I guess it depends on your own moral compass...
    Ride On!

  3. #3
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    I'd agree. Most places I've been are plagued by their lost and founds and are happy to get rid of stuff, but could wind up in a sticky place if the original owner came to claim something they gave away.

    Make your intentions known, but otherwise, have at it.

  4. #4
    weirdo
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    Personally, I don`t think I`d ever take it just because I`d never get over the wondering about it part. On the other hand, it does make mroe sense to put it to use rather than see it go to the dumps., so I couldn`t knock anybody who did wait it out and then salvage it. The previous suggestions to ask how long it gets to stay in lost and found before it goes in the trash and to make perfectly clear that it wasn`t yours originally sound good in my book.
    Recalculating....

  5. #5
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    I would think if they are going to come back, it would be within a week, but asking does sound like it would give peace of mind. Of course if you find any ID in there, you'd have to attempt to contact the person. For good roadside finds, I have cleared my conscience by posting the item in the lost and found on craigslist, but have never been contacted.

  6. #6
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    I was actually GIVEN an MP3 player from my employer's lost & found bin after it had been there for months. I was not shaken up about taking it. at that point, the owner had given up on it.

    fair time, IMO, would be at least a few weeks.

  7. #7
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    Finders' keepers, losers' weepers.

    'Lost and found' is synonymous with 'free box'. Especially, if it's on public display.

    Of course, if someone confronts you about it, that's when you have to decide what kind of person you are.

    The free box at my work is cleaned out once a month. Clothing goods are given to charity. Anything of value is divided among the employees. We keep electronics and anything >$100 for a couple months.

    In this buy-and-discard society, very few people care enough to come back for most things: even things like credit cards and IDs, to expensive smart phones and music equipment.

  8. #8
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    If I lost a pannier, I'd go replace it. Probably without looking terribly hard. If I knew someone found it and was putting it to good use hauling their crap around that would make me happy.

    Take the bag, put a couple spare tubes in it and change a flat for a stranger one day.

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