People have been digitizing their paper files since at least the 80s, trying to ensure they aren't destroyed either by accident or on purpose and making sure they're around for the rest of our digitally enhanced lives.
But sometimes important documents never make it to the scanner, and the loss is felt decades after the documents are destroyed.
Brussels, Belgium is home to the worst traffic in Europe, which is partly due to the poor condition of the roadways that have been badly in need of repair for decades.
Even worse than the roads are the underground thoroughfares that are literally falling apart and subject to yearlong closures, and it's all because mice chewed up the original tunnel plans back in the 90s:
...former officials from the traffic agency Mobiel Brussels admitted that in the 1990s, a creative storage solution ruined most of the master plans for bridges and tunnels in Brussels.
In the ‘90s, Mobiel Brussels was temporarily housed in a hotel room, and there wasn’t enough space for archived documents like, say, master plans. So the agency stuffed its bridge- and tunnel-related paperwork into the pillars holding up a highway viaduct.
As one might expect, the underside of a bridge is not the best place to keep an archive of important documents. Most of the documents were destroyed or at least significantly damaged by rodents. A host of Belgian mice probably have nice little nests made out of shredded blueprints.
Now where have I heard that excuse before...