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This is why you shouldn’t touch priceless works in museums

As the old saying goes, time flies when you’re having fun.

Time would also appear to fly (and smash into tens of pieces) when you allow itinerant tourists to wander around America’s National Watch and Clock Museum unsupervised.

Captured on CCTV in Pennsylvania last week, the museum's footage shows one visitor fondling a large and highly valuable timepiece by Minnesota artist and clockmaker James Borden that's hung in the museum for some 20 years. It was released alongside the message ‘This is why we beg and plead with our visitors to please refrain from touching objects in museums’.

In fact, so keen is the chap to touch the exhibit, that you wonder if he's ever seen a clock before, and then it drops to the floor, smashing into bits around him.

Fruitlessly trying to hang it back up as his partner runs over to help, the pair’s efforts are to no avail as it lies in a crumpled heap. The clock's creator Borden has apparently offered to fix the clock for the museum.

The museum has said that it won't be pressing charges against the man. Just as well - any punishment would certainly have given a new meaning to serving time.