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NATIONAL: A frozen squirrel smashed my car.

Motorists made insurance claims last year for everything from a frozen squirrel crashing through a car windscreen to a cow jumping on a quad bike.

Freak incidents involving animals topped the list of the most bizarre claims made to insurer Norwich Union in 2005, with food-related prangs in second place.

One unlucky driver claimed to be unable to slow down because a potato was lodged behind the brake pedal, while another said a passing vehicle was damaged by a frozen kebab which flew out of an open car door.

Sally Leeman, of Norwich Union, said: "We see a lot of strange claims but were surprised at how many involved animals and food, of all things.

"We can hardly tell drivers to beware of flying kebabs and frozen squirrels when they're on the roads, but this shows how important it is to be aware of what's going on around you at all times."

The top 10 most bizarre motor insurance claims last year were:

A frozen squirrel fell out of a tree and crashed through the windscreen on to the passenger seat

The car was parked when a reindeer fell on the bonnet of my car

As I was driving round a bend, one of the doors opened and a frozen kebab flew out, hitting and damaging a passing car

A herd of cows licked my car and caused damage to the paintwork

A zebra collided with my car when I was at a safari park

While I was waiting at traffic lights, a wasp went down my trouser leg which made me hit the accelerator and prang the car in front

I couldn't brake because a potato was lodged behind the pedal

My parked car was hit by a bull which had escaped from an agricultural show

A cow jumped on my quad bike

As I came over a hill, I hit a cow in the middle of the road, which then hit the bonnet and shattered the windscreen with its rear end
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Publication:The Birmingham Post (England)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Feb 7, 2006
Words:333
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