I Deflate Tires on SUVs on My Way from Work, 62YO Mom Says: They Should Be Banned

Tire Extinguishers are expanding, running international competitions and recruiting more members 12 photos
Photo: Twitter / Tyre Extinguishers
SUV with Deflated TiresSUV with Deflated TiresPolice Stopping Environmental Activists from Blocking HighwaysSUV with Deflated TiresSUV with Deflated TiresWarning Message for SUV DriversDeflated SUV TireDeflated SUV TireActivist Deflating an SUV TireThe Message Left for Owners to ReadPhoto Marking the First Such Action in the U.S.
Cities are becoming more congested and polluted, and a relatively new brand of eco-warriors called the Tire Extinguishers are trying to correct both these wrongs by targeting SUVs. One such Tire Extinguisher explains why she does it.
The Tire Extinguishers started in the UK as the Tyre Extinguishers, and are now present in most European countries, as well as in the United States and Canada. They are self-professed eco-warriors with a very clear mission: to make it impossible for SUVs to exist in the urban landscape. Their first step in that direction is to deflate the tires on SUVs in nightly operations and leave a leaflet for the owner informing them of why their car was targeted.

One such Tire Extinguisher who asks to be called Anna tells My London of her reasons behind her actions and her M.O. She is a 62-year-old mother of three who works as a writer and film worker, and she lives in London. On her way home back from work most days, she deflates tires on SUVs by loosening the caps, and she reckons she’s been able to “extinguish” about 80 SUVs so far.

Her contribution to the Tire Extinguishers’ cause, Anna explains, is rooted to her realization 10 years ago that smart small cars would not be the future because London was becoming more crowded with ever-bigger vehicles. She says SUVs “impose” on her and pollute the air, while owners are usually annoying arrogant pieces of you-know-what. She also says SUVs should be banned, just like cigarettes were following sustained public pushback. The problem is that the government won’t do anything about it, which means it’s up to the people to do so.

“If people won't be considerate then action needs to be taken. It is the same with cigarettes,” Anna explains. “I do it on my way back from work. I would say that so far I have deflated 80 different cars. I don't want to be doing it and I don't enjoy it but it's an extreme reaction that comes from desperation. If the government won't do anything then what else can we do?”

Anna knows what she’s doing is illegal, but she doesn’t care, nor is she swayed by the fear of being caught by the police. She is more afraid of being caught by an angry SUV owner; she’s been caught a few times, but she never got into serious trouble.

Anna also knows that what she’s doing poses a safety risk for the car owner, should he or she not notice the flat and drive off. On second thought, the “danger SUVs are causing” outweighs whatever safety risk she’s causing by deflating the tire, she says.

The Tyre Extinguishers are already praising Anna’s story on social media, using it as some sort of platform to recruit new members. The UK branch is also in competition with the French one for the title of “most extinguished city” – meaning the one with the highest number of targeted SUVs.

If you liked the article, please follow us:  Google News icon Google News Youtube Instagram
About the author: Elena Gorgan
Elena Gorgan profile photo

Elena has been writing for a living since 2006 and, as a journalist, she has put her double major in English and Spanish to good use. She covers automotive and mobility topics like cars and bicycles, and she always knows the shows worth watching on Netflix and friends.
Full profile


Would you like AUTOEVOLUTION to send you notifications?

You will only receive our top stories