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Electric Vehicle Owners Suggest Vandalism or Worse When Public Chargers Are Blocked

EV owners get very riled up when charging stations are blocked by gasoline-powered cars. Here is what EV owners suggest should be done when this occurs.


Electric Vehicle (EV) owners suggest that felony vandalism or even violence is a good idea when one finds a gas-powered vehicle improperly parked in an EV charging spot. We compiled a long list of the suggested tactics that EV owners suggest to manage this issue.

Related Story: Many Public DC Fast Chargers For Electric Vehicles Are Slower Than You’d Think

EV Charging In Public
Although the vast majority of electric vehicle (EV) charging takes place in the home of the EV owner, some owners do rely on public charging to make their cars work. Chargers with an available space are often tricky to find. One problem that makes that struggle a bit harder on EV owners is gas-powered vehicle owners parking in the charging spot. Some EV owners call this being “ICEd out.” ICE stands for Internal combustion engine.

Related Story: EV Reality: Quick Stops At Level 2 Public Electric Vehicle Chargers Are Worthless

EV Owners Post Up Examples
We see daily posts by angry EV owners that their pubic charging spots are blocked by these gas-powered vehicle owners. They are commonplace in just about every EV social media group. Once a post is up, fellow EV owners take the opportunity to make suggestions about what should be done to punish the gas-powered vehicle in the spot. We’ve broken down the suggestions by EV owner into categories below. Here is what EV owners suggest that one should do when one sees a gas-powered vehicle parked in a public EV charging spot:

Jeep in Supercharger spot by John GorehamPaint Damage
Many EV owners suggest that dragging a key along the side of a car improperly parked is a good idea. Do this correctly and the damage could be in the multiple thousands of dollars. In many states, vandalism over $1,000 is a felony offense. Here is a good example of this type of suggestion.
“Some people just don’t care if their car gets keyed or not…”

Tire Destruction
By far the most commonly-suggested retaliation by EV owners for gas-powered cars parked in charging spots is tire damage. Here are some suggestions we found:
“I'd remove the Schrader valve cores from their valve stems.”
“Strange how his valve core got loosened like that.”
“A caltrop just placed nicely on the pavement behind his forward tire is fair game…”
“I have a container that I use to put their valve cores in "for safekeeping"
“That's why I carry a valve tool in the door pocket.”
“Start slashing tires. They'll get the point.”
“I’m just slashing tires at that point.”
“I would definitely punch a hole in all 4 tires.”

General Vandalism
Vandalism of a more general sort is often suggested by EV owners.
“As an option, one could: slash his types, brick all the glass windows, key-up all the paintwork, pop the lights and order-up an 8-tonne skip and place it side-on right front on his truck. Who knows, he might just get the hint that EV bays are for people trying to improve the air quality for everyone who uses lungs to breathe the air around us.”
“This is why everyone needs to carry a pellet gun or a slingshot.”

“time to whip out the knives and hammer...cut the valve stem, take out the windows, headlights and side mirrors.”

Sticker Attacks
Some folks don't seem to have the stomach for lasting damage. These EV owners prefer to place stickers on the vehicle of the gas-powered car. There is even a website where you can go to find like-minded fellows who like to apply such stickers. Here are some examples of comments from the sticker brigade.
“I have a plan to start taping messages on the cars of gasholes which say: The next time you block this charging station, you will need to replace your windshield.”
“Buy some of those no parking warning signs and stick one to the windshield in front of the steering wheel.”
“Get a large “parking violation” or “police tow” stickers. Put them right on the windshield.”

At the other end of the spectrum are the folks that suggest violence. We’ll list just two of the tamer examples we found. We don’t this post to be banned for inciting such behavior.
“This should get you a black eye and slit tires.”
“Got a baseball bat?”

Tesla blocking charger by John Goreham EVs Blocking EV Chargers
EV owners are not just angry at the owners of gas-powered cars. They are also angry with one another. It turns out that EV charging spots are often blocked from use by EV owners who park there and then don’t charge. There is even a social media club that collects images of EV owners blocking charging spots. We took the image above ourselves within a mile of the author’s home.

Torque News wishes to be clear that we don’t condone any of these activities. We are simply reporting on what we observe online in many popular EV owner clubs. What do you think about folks who park in a dedicated EV charging spot, but are not charging? Tell us in the comments below. Is it a bigger offense when the vehicle parked blocking the charger is an EV or not? Tell us your thoughts.

Images by John Goreham.
John Goreham is a long-time New England Motor Press Association member and recovering engineer. John's interest in EVs goes back to 1990 when he designed the thermal control system for an EV battery as part of an academic team. After earning his mechanical engineering degree, John completed a marketing program at Northeastern University and worked with automotive component manufacturers, in the semiconductor industry, and in biotech. In addition to Torque News, John's work has appeared in print in dozens of American news outlets and he provides reviews to many vehicle shopping sites. You can follow John on TikTok @ToknCars, on Twitter, and view his credentials at Linkedin

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CKinSJ (not verified)    March 9, 2022 - 1:41PM

A decade or so ago ICEing a charging spot could get you parking ticket in California. Maybe it’s time to raise the bar on that. Higher penalty and more aggressive ticketing. If the ticket cost was added to your annual registration renewal you would all but certainly have to pay it. The additional revenue would pay the additional cost.

Elton O'Neal (not verified)    December 22, 2022 - 7:14PM

Why does anyone think they have the right to damage another's property or injure another person? This is an infantile and entitled way to look at the world. There are likely plenty of other chargers in the area. Blocking a charger is a parking violation and police oficers could ticket and or tow if local politicians have done their legislative jobs.

Derek s (not verified)    April 26, 2023 - 2:13PM

In reply to by Joe Cumia (not verified)

Yeah I agree. I own one as a work vehicle and I have never had so many altercations in my life. Just today someone pulled in and I politely warned them that the charger is only at 5% its rated charge rate thats why I'm leaving and he told me off. Unreal. Another situation the charge stopped on the car next to me while we were both charging and he thought i turned it off, came out furious. Get a life people.