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Issue 98 - December 2009 - Page 6

Pages in this month's issue:
  1. False Story Claims 450 Gaza Grooms Wed Girls Under Ten in Mass Muslim Marriage
  2. Christopher or Jessica Davies Hacker Hoax Warning
  3. How to Survive a Heart Attack When Alone Hoax
  4. Hotmail Account Closure Phishing Scam
  5. Bungee Jumper Loses Head To Crocodile Video
  6. Egg Windshield Attack Robbery Warning
  7. New US Dollar Notes Preview Hoax
  8. Amazing Device From Google Hoax
  9. Scam Rumours About The Westfield Gift Card Competition on Facebook
  10. Errors in Social Security Statement Trojan Email
  11. Email Exceeded Storage Limit Phishing Scam
  12. Facebook Deleting Inactive Users Hoax

Issue 98 Start Menu

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Egg Windshield Attack Robbery Warning

Summary:
Message warns drivers that roadside criminals are throwing eggs at the windshields of passing cars in the hope that the drivers will be forced to pull over due to obscured vision and therefore become vulnerable to robbery (Full commentary below).



Status:
Not impossible, but unlikely and such attacks are unsubstantiated

Example:(Submitted, December 2009)
Subject: Warning for drivers..egg attack

Very IMP info...........Please share with others

If you are driving at night and were attacked with eggs on your car's windshield, do not operate your wiper or spray any water. Eggs mixed with water become milky and block your vision up to 92.5%. You are forced to stop at road side and become victim of robbery. This is new technique used by robbers....IN LEBANON NOW

Take care and have a Safe Driving.



Commentary:
This message, which circulates via email, blogs and social networking websites, warns that roadside thieves are forcing motorists to pull over to the side of the road by pelting eggs at their windshields, thereby obscuring their vision. According to the message, if the wipers and window washer are activated after such an egg attack, the resulting mess will block vision from the vehicle by up to 92.5% and the driver will be forced to pull over immediately. Supposedly, the egg-throwing criminals can then rob the driver at will. The message suggests, therefore, that drivers who have been subjected to egg attacks should not use their windshield wipers or washers, presumably so that they can still see well enough to drive on to a safer location before stopping to clean up.

While such robbery scenarios are not entirely impossible, I have seen no evidence to confirm that they are actually occurring, at least on a widespread scale. So far, I have found no credible news or police reports about such robbery-motivated egg attacks. While the version included here suggests that such robberies are occurring in Lebanon, other versions are set in India or other parts of Asia. Many have no location reference at all. And none provide any details about precisely where or when one of these egg attacks has actually taken place. Thus, it is difficult to ascertain if the warning message is based on a real event or is simply a cautionary tale intended to raise driver awareness about possible highway robbery scenarios.

Moreover, my own testing casts serious doubt about just how effective such an egg attack would actually be. My experiments suggest that, while throwing eggs at a glass windshield would certainly make a significant mess, immediate use of the vehicle's wipers and screen washers would likely remove enough of the egg to allow the driver to continue without pulling over straight away. To test the scenario, I pelted two eggs at the driver's side of my vehicle's windshield and then immediately activated the windshield wiper and washer. I found that virtually all of the egg residue was rapidly removed from the area of the screen covered by the wiper blade. In fact, there was no significant blockage of my vision, even before the bulk of the egg residue was removed by the wiper blades.

The message states that the driver's vision will be obscured by "up to 92.5%". However, given the large range of variables that could impact on the outcome of a windshield egg attack, quoting such a precise figure seems rather absurd. Just how much the driver's vision was obscured would depend on how many eggs were thrown, the size of the eggs, where they landed on the windshield, the size and shape of the windshield, how well the vehicle's wiper and washer system was operating and other factors. Given such variables, attempting to apply a meaningful percentage figure to the scenario is virtually impossible. Moreover, my real world tests indicate that any obscuring of vision would likely be a great deal less than 92.5%.

There are also other problems with the robbery method described. Even if it was necessary to pull over after a driver had attempted to remove egg from the windshield using the wipers, the vehicle would likely have travelled many meters down the road before finally coming to a stop. Thus, to carry out their robbery, the egg throwers would need to very quickly make their way down the road to the egged car before the driver cleaned the screen and drove off. Alternatively, they would need to have one or more of their henchmen stationed further down the road to wait for the egged vehicle to pull over. But, it would be difficult or impossible to calculate beforehand exactly where the car might finally pull over. Also, if a driver were to see a motley crew of egg-throwers approaching the vehicle, he or she might well take off out of danger before they even arrived, egg obscured vision or not. And, of course, hitting the windshield of a moving vehicle with enough eggs to have an effect could actually be quiet difficult in the first place.

All in all, the scenario described seems a rather haphazard and hit and miss method of conducting a roadside robbery and one that would likely have a high failure rate. Other methods, such as posing as a motorist or pedestrian in distress, would likely be more effective and simpler to implement means of tricking a driver into stopping. Of course, if your vehicle is attacked, by eggs or any other method, it would certainly be advisable to continue driving to a safer location if at all possible. Thus, as a general cautionary tale, the message may have some small merit. But, given the somewhat implausible nature of the crime described and the lack of any evidence that confirms that such robbery-motivated egg attacks have actually taken place, the credibility of the warning seems questionable at best.



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Previous Article            Next Article

Issue 98 Start Menu

Pages in this month's issue:
  1. False Story Claims 450 Gaza Grooms Wed Girls Under Ten in Mass Muslim Marriage
  2. Christopher or Jessica Davies Hacker Hoax Warning
  3. How to Survive a Heart Attack When Alone Hoax
  4. Hotmail Account Closure Phishing Scam
  5. Bungee Jumper Loses Head To Crocodile Video
  6. Egg Windshield Attack Robbery Warning
  7. New US Dollar Notes Preview Hoax
  8. Amazing Device From Google Hoax
  9. Scam Rumours About The Westfield Gift Card Competition on Facebook
  10. Errors in Social Security Statement Trojan Email
  11. Email Exceeded Storage Limit Phishing Scam
  12. Facebook Deleting Inactive Users Hoax