Robot vacuum cleaner escapes from Cambridge Travelodge

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Image source, Getty Images
Image caption,
A robot vacuum cleaner - similar to this - did not stop when it got to the hotel door - and just kept on going

A robot vacuum cleaner made a break for freedom after giving staff the slip at a Travelodge hotel.

The automated cleaner failed to stop at the front door of the hotel in Orchard Park in Cambridge on Thursday, and was still on the loose the following day.

Staff said it just kept going and "could be anywhere" while well-wishers on social media hoped the vacuum enjoyed its travels, as "it has no natural predators" in the wild.

It was found under a hedge on Friday.

Staff at the hotel posted the story of the robot vacuum's great escape on social media, asking for it to be returned, if found.

"Today we had one of our new robot vacuums run for its life," the assistant manager wrote.

"They normally sense the lip at the entrance [to the hotel] and turn around, but this one decided to make a run for it."

Image source, N Chadwick/Geograph
Image caption,
The robot vacuum had enough of cleaning the lobby and made its bid for freedom from the hotel, which is next to the A14

Its disappearance was not noticed for about 15 minutes and despite a search, it appeared the vacuum had made a clean break for it.

The assistant manager assumed it might have been found, and taken, and pointed out it was only compatible with the docking and charging station at the hotel, so was "useless" to anyone else.

While some readers joked about the robot's adventures, one feared for its safety in the great outdoors, pointing out that "nature abhors a vacuum".

However, much to everyone's relief, the device was found nestled under a hedge on Friday afternoon by a (human) hotel cleaner sprucing up the front drive.

It was dusted off and "is now back sitting happily on a shelf with the rest of its robot vacuum family", the hotel confirmed.

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