Climate activists deflate tires on SUVs in Boston

Climate activists deflate tires on SUVs in Boston

An international climate activist group has claimed responsibility for deflating tires on 43 SUVs in Boston’s tony Beacon Hill neighborhood — and leaving behind preachy notes warning vehicle owners: “Your gas guzzler kills.”

In a blog post, the group, which calls themselves the Tyre Extinguishers and claims to have 15,000 members worldwide, explained that Wednesday night’s stunt was their first foray into Boston, and that activists only targeted “large, luxury gas powered SUVs.”

The eco-warriors noted that they spared hybrid, electric and handicapped-marked vehicles.

“SUVs and 4x4s are a disaster for our health, our public safety and our climate. Bigger and bigger cars are dominating our towns and cities, and all so a privileged few can flaunt their wealth,” Tyre Extinguishers wrote on their website. “Because governments and politicians have failed to protect us from this danger, we must protect ourselves.”

The environmental campaigners said they chose to target SUV owners living in Beacon Hill because of the area’s high concentration of wealth.

Patronizing letters tucked beneath windshield wipers on the vandalized vehicles read in part: “We have deflated one or more of your tires. You’ll be angry, but don’t take it personally. It’s not you, it’s your car.”

Climate activist seen purportedly deflating a tire on an SUV
A group of climate activists called the Tyre Extinguishers has claimed responsibility for vandalizing 43 gas-powered SUVs in Boston’s Beacon Hill neighborhood.
Tyre Extinguishers

Tyre Extinguishers' leaflet on a windshield
Victims of the vandalism discovered leaflets on their windshields, which read: “your gas guzzler kills.”
Tyre Extinguishers

“We did this because driving around urban areas in your massive vehicle has huge consequences for others. This is a machine that destroys life with terrifying efficiency.”

SUV owners who woke up to find their tires deflated were reassured: “You will have no difficulty getting around without your gas guzzler, with walking, cycling or public transit.”

The Boston Police Department has confirmed that officers responded to vandalism reports along Mount Vernon Street on Thursday morning and were investigating the incident, reported Boston Herald. Some 10 victims have been interviewed, but so far no arrests have been made.

Local residents were dismayed by the act of mass vandalism, arguing that there are other ways to combat climate change without resorting to actions that could potentially hurt innocent people.

Last summer, some 40 SUV were similarly damaged by the eco-activists on the Upper East Side.
Last summer, some 40 SUV were similarly damaged by the eco-activists on the Upper East Side.
Tyre Extinguishers

A woman named Lauren told news channel Boston 25 that a neighbor who works as a firefighter could not get to his fire station Thursday after having his tires deflated.

“There are plenty of people who work at the hospital and couldn’t get to work on time,” she said, adding that her parents’ SUV was also damaged in the overnight stunt.

Another victim told police they missed their medical appointment because the tires on their vehicle were deflated.  

“I agree from an environmental perspective [with] what is being said, but at the same time to not think about the consequences of what people might need to do in the morning, go to a medical appointment and go to a job interview,” one woman told NBC10 Boston.

Tyre Extinguishers' website
The Tyre Extinguishers is an international, decentralized group that was started in the UK in March 2022.
Tyre Extinguishers

The incident in Boston marks at least the 18th time the group has vandalized SUVs so far this year, according to its website.

It comes 10 months after eco-warriors affiliated with the purportedly leaderless organization deflated tires on 40 SUVs on the Upper East Side in New York City.

In September, the Tyre Extinguishers took responsibility for vandalizing about 600 vehicles in nine different countries on the same day, including in the UK, France, Germany, Switzerland, the Netherlands and Norway.

Since its founding in March 2022, the Tyre Extinguishers group claims to have taken the air out of more than 10,000 SUV tires around the world.