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Saskatoon man devastated by accidental Roll Up To Win $55K boat win email

A Saskatoon resident said he was devastated after he was told the major prize he won in a Tim Hortons contest was a mistake.

Shawn Stensrud said he was having coffee Wednesday morning when he received a congratulatory email from Tim Hortons.

“It said how many doughnuts and coffees and points I won and then underneath it said, ‘Congrats, you won a boat,’” he told Global News. “The more I kept reading it, the more I kept thinking, ‘Maybe I did win.’”

Stensrud wasn’t the only one to receive the exciting email Wednesday morning; others popped up in around 500,000 inboxes across Canada congratulating players for winning a fishing boat and trailer worth nearly $55,000 as part of the Roll Up To Win contest.

Stensrud said he sat on hold with the Tim Hortons head office for two and half hours that morning, still thinking he had won before an apology letter was sent from Tim Hortons, saying the winning message was a mistake.

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“My heart sunk,” he said. “I actually kind of thought something major in my life happened, something good.”

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He and his wife were discussing whether to keep the boat or to sell it before they received the bad news.

“We are a struggling family so it would have helped but it is what it is.”

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A Tim Hortons spokesperson confirmed to Global News Thursday morning that the incorrect emails sent Wednesday to some customers were because of “human error.”

“We developed a Roll Up To Win recap email message with the best intentions of giving our guests a fun overview of their 2024 play history,” Michael Oliveira, director of communications at Tim Hortons, said in an emailed response to Global News.

“Unfortunately, there was a human error that resulted in some guests receiving some incorrect information in their recap message.”

This came after an email apologizing to customers Wednesday for the mistake stated that “technical errors may have resulted in incorrect information” about rolls or prizes being included in a previous recap email related to the contest.

The company said any prizes won in the contest would have been revealed instantly when customers played Roll Up to Win, adding that “any large value prizes would have had a further verification process.”

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Stensrud said those who received the email should receive a small compensation.

“I deserve more than an apology,” Stensrud said. “I’ve been a loyal customer for more than 20 years for sure.”

LPC Avocats has launched a proposed class-action suit, which has yet to be certified, claiming the defendants are owed the boat as well as damages, including $10,000 in punitive damages.

Stensrud said he doesn’t expect anything major but even a gift card would be appreciated.

“I’m not asking for a boat or $50,000 but even just a small compensation for their mistake.”

— with files from Global News’ Saba Aziz

&© 2024 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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