These would be the scariest images that you can ever receive as a rental shop. What you see there is a Canon 600mm f4 IS that went swimming with the crocodiles in Florida, and subsequently fished out by divers. Kids, please don't try this at home.
Off to repairs with this thing. Will keep you posted.
------- Update 1 --------
The story goes something like this...
The renter was using his 1Ds II to take pics with this lens and 2x extender (still attached in the pics). The monopod head snapped off, and the whole rig came falling down on the concrete. where the camera snapped off from the rest of the assembly. The lens then fell into the crocodile infested waters bellow the concrete bridge. The pictures are the aftermath.
First word we got of this was an all caps email, asking to call about an accident with the lens. At this point, two of our people had heart attacks, another started seeking a lawyer with the bankruptcy court.... etc. It was a rather nerve racking atmosphere for a while.
This lens renting business is not all gravy. Sometimes this happens.
--------------- Update 2 ---------------
We talked to Canon Professional Services (CPS). According to the person there, out of 10 lenses he has seen that were fully submerged, they were able to recover 0 of them.
By the looks of things, we are going to write this off as a loss. Hood and hard case will be sold off. So far there is a plan to get a couple of guys together, take a sledge hammer to the lens and film it (ala Office Space). The results will be posted on YouTube for your viewing pleasure (horror?).
------------- Update 3 ---------------
There has been a lot of questions on whether the customer renting this lens is now paying up the $7200 tab to buy us a new copy. I feel like this question is creating a lot of anxiety from potential customers, so I am answering it. No, the customer is not responsible for the full damage. He had insurance (purchased from us at time of rental) on this lens, so is only responsible for 12% of the cost of replacement.
This is all the comment I will give as far as insurance and the underwrites, etc.
--------------- Update 4 ---------------
A lot of people have been asking for donations to schools, sales as props, art projects, etc. Folks, we are in the process of negotiating with various parties involved. We are not sure if we will get to keep the carcass after everything settles down. I am taking note of the particularly charitable/funny/inventive ways of destruction, and will choose the proper method of disposal when the dust settles. If videos are made, it will be made public and links will be posted here. At this point, I am not expecting anything to happen for about a month. Right now, we still have not even received it back from the customer.
--------------- Update 5 ---------------
The real photography snuff is now available of SmugMug. Check out the link http://borrowlenses.smugmug.com ...y/4337896_8tsBX#254473115....
--------------- 03/11/08 Update 6 ---------------
The lens came back from Canon. It is dead. There is so much gunk and mold inside, they declared it beyond economical cost of repair. We are now talking to all the insurance people involved, and hopefully the destruction party or charitable giveaway will happen some time soon. Stay tuned.