British climate activists deflate more than 40 tires on SUVs in New York City and leave leaflets saying ‘your gas guzzler kills’: Group warns more cities will be struck in the coming weeks
- Tyre Extinguishers originated in the UK, and say their mission is ‘to make it impossible to own a huge polluting 4×4 in the world’s urban areas’
- The group deflate the tires of SUVs, in a bid to make owning one so inconvenient that drivers will switch to other, more environmentally-friendly, vehicles
- They have targeted vehicles in the U.K., Austria, Germany, Switzerland, The Netherlands, Sweden and New Zealand
- This week they carried their first ‘action’ in New York City, deflating the tires of multiple vehicles on Manhattan’s Upper East Side
- The group left leaflets on the SUVs they hit, saying: ‘Attention: Your gas guzzler kills’, and are vowing to act in other cities
The movement, which originated in the United Kingdom, seeks to dissuade people from owning SUVs in urban areas, and switch instead to more environmentally-friendly vehicles.
The SUVs they vandalized had leaflets let on the windshield, which stated: ‘Attention: Your gas guzzler kills’.
On Twitter, they boasted about their actions.
‘BIG NEWS: TYRE EXTINGUISHERS STRIKE FOR THE FIRST TIME IN NEW YORK CITY!’ they tweeted on Tuesday.
The group Tyre Extinguishers posted a photo on social media of one of their followers deflating the tires of an SUV
The group’s followers print out and leave these leaflets on the windscreen
They said: ’40 SUVs disarmed in the Upper East Side, the first of many.
‘We have an American English leaflet (‘tire’ rather than ‘tyre’) on our website so USA folks, you can join in!’
Police are investigating, but no arrests have been made.
One victim emailed them with the subject: ‘Damn you, Red Coats!’
The SUV-owner said that ‘far more environmentally unfriendly’ pickup trucks would now be called out, to repair the damaged vehicles, and pointed out most of those attacked would be covered by insurance.
The loosely-organized movement encourages anyone to participate, at will. They encourage acting under the cover of darkness, working in pairs, and practicing on bicycle tires first.
Activists are told to avoid cars used for people with disabilities, traders’ cars, minibuses and normal-sized cars – but electric SUVs are considered fair game.
‘NYC is just the latest place and we expect other cities in the USA to follow,’ they said.
A spokesman for the group told Fox News Digital they intended to carry out more actions.
‘We are rapidly expanding across the United States and are in touch with people in major cities across the USA,’ a spokesperson said.
‘We expect this to expand massively.’
In a statement, the group said they ‘want to see bans on SUVs in urban areas, pollution levies to tax SUVs out of existence, and massive investment in free, comprehensive public transport.’
They added: ‘But until politicians make this a reality, Tyre Extinguishers action will continue.’
Critics on social media said the action was misguided.
‘People need to remember that their actions, even if they feel they are morally correct decisions, still have consequences,’ said one.
Many others thought the group advocated slashing and destroying the tires, and creating more waste.
‘As much as I dislike the use of cars over public transit/biking as you guys; destroying private property/causing more pollution by damaging tires and creating more waste is actually very counterproductive,’ said one.
‘Instead, try making transit and biking more appealing than driving.’
Another said: ‘So to fight global warming etc you deflated the tires on 40 vehicles. And now 40 tow trucks will be heading out to reinflate/replace these tires. I’m not a carbon footprint genius but seems you increased it exponentially based on the size and fuel consumption of the tow trucks.’
One person joked: ‘May I suggest you target Cadillac Escalades in and around Harlem? That should be fun. Bring a camera.’
Another threatened: ‘Would it be legal to shoot these people in some areas if they are vandalizing your property? I’m just asking as a curiosity?’