New York-based Barnacle Parking Enforcement has unveiled the Barnacle—a new, unorthodox immobilization device that will undoubtedly have the most desperate offenders driving off with their heads out the side-window, Ace Ventura-style.
Serial parking offenders have long found their cars immobilized with the iron boot—a device affixed to a single wheel, preventing a motorist from driving their car whilst dodging a fine.
The Barnacle – though utterly frustrating upon first glance – offers motorists a much less painful repatriation process by way of on-the-spot payment, reports CBC News.
By entering their vehicle’s information and completing debit or credit card payment on the device itself, drivers can then remove the device, dropping it off at a designated return depot within 24 hours.
Fail to return the Barnacle, and you’ll be hit with a heavy fine—and another Barnacle.
The Barnacle uses commercial-grade suction cups to create a strong vacuum with a vehicle’s windshield; it’s capable of producing hundreds of pounds of force, thus eliminating any possibility of strong-arming the device off one’s car.
Barnacle Parking Enforcement made use of the same kind of suction cups that professionals use to move and install large, heavy pieces of glass when perfecting the Barnacle’s design.
It’s not tamper-proof, but the manufacturer says an ear-piercing alarm will sound if the Barnacle is physically tampered with—for instance drilled into, pounded on, or pried at.
A GPS locator will also trip the alarm if you get your Ace Ventura on, and make a window-down run for it.
Driving in reverse will similarly trip the alarm, and attract undo attention.
Owners of high-end luxury vehicles and sports cars will find the Barnacle preferable to the boot, or a tow, as the windshield suction device is far less likely to cause damage to a vehicle’s paint or bodywork than either of the alternatives.
When asked by CBC’s As It Happens if Barnacle Parking Enforcement has had any interest from Canada, company founder Kevin Dougherty replied he has had some interest from different groups in Canada, both public and private.
It would really suck to have this device stuck to your car, but it appears the Barnacle may stick around if it’s found to be effective in future trial runs proposed to be conducted in Canadian cities.