Caravanning is not exactly an adrenaline sport. Trundling along B-roads at 25 miles an hour; waiting in traffic up and down the M5 for the best part of the summer; sitting in muddy fields while their owners play cards and watch the drizzle through the window: it's hard to imagine how they could come to any harm at all. However, a new study has revealed that caravans have witnessed some truly shocking incidents - leading to six surprising insurance claims.
Saga Insurance spent over half a million pounds on caravan claims in 2015, and while there were a fair number of bumps on the road, accidents in the field, and elbows through windows, there were six claims that really stood out.
1. Loo looter
One policyholder kept his caravan in storage over winter, and had a call from the storage unit manager one morning saying there had been a break in. At first sight it appeared the thief had just stolen the valuables. However, on closer inspection it emerged that the thief had made off with the fridge and toilet too.
2. Blooming blowtorch
A customer liked to park his caravan on his drive so he could keep a close eye on it. It meant he had a great view of his neighbour as he decided to tackle the weeds on his driveway with a blowtorch. The fire got out of hand, spread to a bush, and blistered the caravan's paintwork. It cost £2,000 to put it right.
A customer parked his caravan on his drive for the evening so he could clean it the following day. However, when he woke up he discovered a runaway wheelie bin had crashed into his motorhome multiple times causing more than £4,000 worth of damage.
4. Tipping point
A policyholder popped to the shops, and while he was out, the weather took a turn for the worse. When he got back, he got a nasty surprise, as he discovered his caravan lying on its side. The strong winds had tipped his caravan over causing almost £2,000 worth of damage.
5. Humongous hailstones
One policyholder was on holiday in their caravan when bad weather woke them up. When they peeked out of the window to see the storm in action, they noticed golf ball sized hailstones hitting the caravan. The hailstones dented the caravan so much that it cost almost £5,000 to fix.
6. Un-pheasant experience
A customer's holiday ended rather unpleasantly when a pheasant tried to make a dash across the road. As well as damaging the customer's car, the colourful bird bounced off the caravan, causing almost £2,000 worth of damage.
As Roger Ramsden, chief executive of Saga Services, puts it: "It's fair to say that owning a caravan and holidaying in one is more adventurous for some than others."