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The “Coal Rolling” and “ICE-ing” Menace and What You Can do to Prevent It and Abate It

ANALYSIS AND OPINION: There have been incidents across the country lately that have become more noticeable and reportable to both news agencies and the police. “Coal Rolling” and “ICE-ing” are suppose to be acts of protest against emissions policies but they are really nothing more than acts of cowardliness by ignoramuses. Empower rather than arm yourself by doing these ten things to stop these shameful people.
Posted: January 5, 2019 - 8:02AM
Author: Al Castro

The act “Coal Rolling” and “ICE-ing” is bullying and intimidating no doubt as if the predators were a burning cross on a front lawn, if not as deadly as of yet, thank goodness. “Coal Rolling” is the act of revving up a diesel motor to create torque, a legitimate act under normal circumstances turn illicit when doing it to cause harm to another fellow American. We’re supposed to be on the same side, remember? “ICE-ing” is its acronym, Internal Combustion Engine-“ing” by using a gas motor to prove one’s superiority over green technology, apparently and supposedly. But by the time the predators are finished with their juvenile acts ranging from entering a premise or property to conduct an illegal act which is trespassing; disorderly conduct by intentionally blocking a public pathway, or illegally parking in front of a public charging station; creating an unnecessary amount of vehicular exhaust smoke to pollute the air; to reckless endangerment on public roads, or vehicular battery and assault with a deadly weapon by forcing people off the road with smoke or with a vehicle, you have enough penal law and local ordinance offenses to put the perpetrators in jail. Very much like the bullies are doing, we too need to organize and coordinate ourselves to inform, educate, empower, and convey a message we won’t tolerate such behavior and will fight back by upholding the rule of law:

  • “Coal Rolling” and “ICE-ing” is an act of protesting against emissions policies. Some say it’s an act of bullying terrorism.
  • Regardless of how defined it can be a potentially deadly exchange of high stakes brinkmanship in which if either side does not exercise restraint, it can lead to felony charges, injury, even death.
  • It’s manifested by blocking public charging stations with some kind of diesel vehicle usually a pickup truck, or revving the accelerator to produce an absurd amount of diesel exhaust to drown an electric or hybrid vehicle owner or bicyclist with such smoke they cannot see or breathe for a few seconds or minutes.
  • This kind of disorientation by diesel plume if prolonged can lead to an accident.
  • Prosecutors can charge the diesel offender with willful intent if such owner or bicyclist is killed or injured.
  • But the way “Coal Rolling” is done in these acts against green car owners and bicyclist is something else other than the true sense of “Coal Rolling” and illegal to do anywhere.
  • “Coal Rolling” is technically legal in some states as logically and mechanically that’s how a Diesel engine is able to augment power to obtain torque. It is widely used legally at places such as state fairs, and there’s nothing wrong with this, this is what diesel trucks do and why we build them.
  • It becomes illegal to do, even if not specified by statute, when you use it as a tool to manifest willful intent or recklessness of a subsequent crime: if you blind and choke someone that they become disoriented and get into a accident and die, a prosecutor regardless of political affiliation will charge you, the “Coal Roller,” with homicide. Your culpable mental state was reckless or intent, and the m.o. was rolling coal.
  • This goes beyond politics: if you love and respect your country and its laws, you are committing an oxymoron by exhibiting such behavior as “Coal Rolling.”
  • Some states like New Jersey are considering specific laws prohibiting such acts.

Politics and steroided internet frenzy are the recipe for a scenario where you, the electric car owner rolls up onto a public charging station to find diesel pickup trucks blocking the stations, and at times young men who apparently are the owners of these trucks standing around either responsible for the behavior, or witnessing this kind of incident, gauging for a reaction. They’re looking for trouble and waiting to see if you’re it.

Don’t be baited. They may look intimidating but once they’re in handcuffs they’re no different than a bunch of cry babies, just like the old school mobsters, trust me on this. And where there is weakness in our humanity we need to arise to the occasion with our vehicles to let it be known we won’t stand for this kind of behavior and we need to gather our resolve and be strong.

So based on my observations and experiences as a professional security officer and former LEO, here’s a list of ten things you can do right now to empower yourselves to avoid confrontation and uphold the rule of law, starting with things you can do to avoid public charging where these incidents occur:

1. Charge at home or at the office. By doing this you entirely avoid this situation from happening to begin with, at least at the charging stations where most of these things occur. If you are driving locally with a BEV with decent range or have a hybrid PHEV, frankly, there’s no excuse and no reason why you can’t charge at home or the office, especially if you have a PHEV. Don’t forget to plug in at a safe zone so you won’t have to run into these diesel bullies. If you run out of range as a PHEV owner, you’ll be forgiven starting with me, to sputter home on gas. Besides, PHEVs eventually soon will become completely incompatible with public mega supercharging. The smaller the battery, the hotter it gets, especially if you mega supercharge. This is not my opinion, this is FACT. The batteries are now way too small and get way too hot as they are from use, they now have become way too dangerous to public mega supercharge in 5-10 minutes. You need to anticipate this if you plan on keeping your older BEV or PHEV for a while. The concept of public mega supercharging a PHEV is becoming a concept past, and manufacturers are not upgrading a tiny battery or its circuitry so you can mega supercharge, it’s too expensive , impractical, and too dangerous. Go home or carry a spare portable battery pack.

2. Use open air public charging stations. Using enclosed stations inside unknown or remote locale garages is inviting trouble up to assault, rape, and robberies to begin with, a haven for any kind of bully. Unless at home or the office where you might feel more comfortable charging, if you need to public charge, try to use an open air public charging station where you’ll be more noticed by witnesses and where a cry for help is more likely to be heard. Just make sure witnesses are around.

3. Be judicious during the time of day. Looking at these videos and pictures of these diesel trucks, I’m looking for patterns. I see a lot of them look late model, some of them are older models but customized and very well taken cared of, a lot of them apparently used for work in the trades, some of them are tandem axle and Ram Cummins Turbo Diesels, high end expensive equipment, that you know a lot of these guys have bank notes on them or have to spend a lot of money refueling them, as diesel fuel costs more. That means unless they’re somewhere in default from not making car payments, these guys have jobs. Plan accordingly. I doubt these guys will be in the mood for a “Coal Rolling” interlude at lunch or rush hour. After dinner or weekends is asking for trouble. Be smart for yourselves.

4. Waiting on line for a charger v. Making an appointment for one. This is where you need to use discretion and exercise care. By making an appointment depending on the location you’ll get in and out more quickly. On the other hand there’s nothing that beats a crowd, especially when the group on your side is kindred spirit.

5. The more the merrier. Speaking of a crowd, bring a companion or another EV owner with their car with yours. Grab a bunch of friends in a carload to go with you. Bullies like it when you show up alone. It makes it easier to prey on you especially if you are a female. Females are not impressed with “Coal Rolling.” This is a male pickup truck thing. This is where I need you females out there to get onboard with me and keep your men, whether it’s your man, or your brother, and their male friends, to keep them in check and get on their cases. There’s nothing cool about this. So the larger the counterinsurgency of any kind against them, the greater the chance of deterrence or resistance. If you are a female there isn’t a greater threat to a bully than a car load of ladies that mean business. For the police who show up at the scene, it makes your female case just that more compelling and believable, especially if some of you are mothers. Who could ever accuse a mother of lying or provoking except in self defense? It goes to that maternal “defend your offspring” instinct thing that the cops will plausibly understand.

6. Call the public and private fuzz. Call 911 at ANY sign of trouble. Tell them come NOW. If they don’t, call them right back. If not, call the desk officer at the station house and tell the boss to get his cops’ asses moving (but say it more nicely please)! Before anything, call first if you roll up and there’s diesel trucks standing by, even if they’re not blocking or doing anything. They’re waiting around for trouble. They might be waiting for you. After the police, call the security of the property you’re situated, whether it be campus police, mall, building, or property security, residential retirement home security, etc. If you tell security you called the police, security will also respond. Part of the issue apparently from this video, is the lack of interestest or indifference from the police as they too have had black plumes of smoke blown in their face. The message to them and from the “coal rollers” seems to be one of winking and tolerance. We cannot allow cops to be disrespected like this. If they do it to them, where do the rest of us stand? I don’t know about the line cops, but for the cop bosses, the message should be clear with the addition of a Coal Rolling Task Force to start ticketing, towing, and arresting. Vehicles also need inspection as well:

7. Call the tow company. Usually there are signs posted around supercharging stations that indicate any illegal parkers will be towed. After you get names to place the blames from both the police and security, call the tow company and get them rolling with the names of police and security you already have. And get their name too. You have a towing condition in front of you and there’s no time like now to have the people who’ll make money doing it for you, respond.

8. Lights, camera, action! At the first smell of trouble after calling police, security, and tow, take out the cameras and cell phones to start shooting pictures. Coordinate. One takes still, the other, video. That’ll be your party’s sole responsibility if you bring a group with you to a have at least one movie and one still camera man or woman, each. Make sure to capture faces and license plates. Nothing can be more damning than to have a detective in plain clothes, a uniformed state trooper, a state, county, or city highway patrolman, a sheriff’s deputy, or a police officer show up at a bully’s door with blown up pictures with plates and faces, to at least tell the bully to knock it off first and last warning, or click the bracelets to collar him or them for their “Coal Rolling” misdeeds.

9. Be prepared to follow through. Yeah, I know. It’s a pain in the ass to go an affidavit hearing at a lawyer’s office during a civil petition, a witness box during a grand jury felony investigation, and/or a trial, civil or criminal. But that’s why you’re the first one to jump on the bandwagon to proclaim how great this country is. You want to make a difference? You don’t want these creeps to get away with this do you? This is where I tell people like you to mean what you say and say what you mean. FOLLOW UP. If you don’t follow through the bully will find someone else and get away with it. What’s needed here if they have a job and no criminal record, is a criminal conditional one on probation with at least a community service sentence for an eventual purge of their record at minimum, until they display better behavior. If they’re a frequent flyer, then we need to put them away again. It’s really up to you. It’s up to all of us. Do the right thing.

10. Attention Tesla, Rivian, Bollinger, and other high end electric pickup owners. I don’t envy you. Shakespeare: “heavy is the head who wears the crown.” You are pickup trucks’ first early adopters, and as leaders the burdens come with all of that. Be careful, but be responsible, You’re setting a example for us all. Don’t be baited by weaklings. I’m assuming this article will have a sense of timelessness to it to be installed in my archives with Torque News. So I’m writing and speaking as I look toward the future in as little as a year from now when we start seeing Rivians and Bollingers out in the wild, Tesla U’s a year later. These trucks in many ways are no different in their dynamics with this situation than Rolls Royce owners have with their cars in their dynamic ironically. I often like to say that there are certain places one should never drive a Rolls Royce to, regardless of vintage, especially if the owner is looking for a bargain. High end electric pickup truck owners should apply that dynamic to this situation appropriately. I would cringe to pull up into a bar the next three years or so driving a Rivian in an ocean of Cummins Diesels parked outside. Last call is asking for trouble. Be careful driving in hardcore died into the cloth red states as a native or as a drive or fly over or through driver destined for elsewhere, that until full electric pickup integration and saturation, you are a sitting duck even when rolling. Be careful.

And finally, to my “Coal Rolling” American brethren, I ask you this: has it ever occurred to you that some of the ones you “Coal Roll” might be a relative of a friend, or a loved one, a work colleague, someone who know or care for, that you may not be thinking when you do such a thing? They say every American, regardless of race or ethnicity, is a 10th cousin, and we’re all supposed to be on the same side but with a few differences in opinions about certain things, and in the scheme of things, opinions that really don’t matter, as we’re supposed to love one another. When can we start?

Don’t be fooled. “Coal Rolling” is not about emissions or excessive government regulations impinging on individual rights. If you think it is, then why haven’t you been voting or been active constructively to counter its existence? That is not being civic minded to be no different than the “Coal Rollers”. “Coal Rolling” is not even about climate change or Big Oil trying to stop BEV proliferation.

“Coal Rolling” is about the rule of law. If you respect your country, if you stand up to take your hat off with the presentation of the colors and the anthem, if you respect our heroes who are our military and first responders, believe in the causes and values we hold dear, then you should respect the laws we abide by and the fellow citizens we live with that follow them too. This is about civility and law and nothing else.

Technology is an amazing thing. It has become so vast, so complex, and so swift in its invention then proliferation it is now capable of taking care of itself. But the technology doesn’t own us, we own the technology. We shouldn’t be afraid of it. That’s also what “Coal Rolling” is about. It is about fear of technology and it’s integration into our lives. If we are truly the masters of our universe then we should have nothing to fear but ourselves.

The irony is that the same demographic that sits in front of those superchargers thinking they’re sending a message, are the same ones who’ll be the first ones trading in their Cummins for a Rivian or Bollinger, even a Tesla pickup when they find out how much power, horsepower, torque, improved driving dynamics with the battery tray, and low costs are to operate, mark my words.

America is a sordid but still a beautiful thing. God bless it and us all . . .

Photos and videos pulled and screenshotted from YouTube via Badass Diesels and TwistedDiesels Channels, GM utility truck and gold Ford pickup at separate Tesla stations via Reddit, Ford green pickup via “Tesla Owner” on Twitter, and all under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, allowance is made for "fair use" for purposes such as criticism, comment, and news reporting.

I am so grateful that my publisher allows me the generous privilege within reason to express my opinions about matters related to the auto industry. I try to be judicious and respectful about the content. I ask you do the same in the comments section. And please keep in mind that the opinions expressed here are solely mine, and not those of Hareyan Publishing or its employees, including my staff colleagues.

Al Castro is a security expert and a retired LEO who is a staff and opinion piece writer on electric and autonomous vehicles for Torque News.

What do you think of “Coal Rolling?” Please let us know below!


The Crusty Aut… (not verified)    January 6, 2019 - 11:42AM

These acts are IMO carried out by individuals suffering from "little man syndrome", this is the reason many of them own large, lifted diesel trucks with a pair of plastic nutz hanging off the back hitch in the first place. These poor sick overcompensating boys probably need some counseling to help them to see that their childish acts don't make them the big men they so desperately want to be. No these acts just make them look like the childish dicks that they are.

bailey (not verified)    October 5, 2022 - 4:59PM

In reply to by The Crusty Aut… (not verified)

only read the first bit before i burst out laughing as this is the sort of article you write at school there was no background research at all even the first points are incorrect and im guessing are just his opinions for for someone who is intimidated by that must be a real masculine man as even little girls wouldn't be but ig its a different story in america as they do all use trucks its also funny watching people saying oh they need to do this and that as if you can wave a magic wand and make the world a better place in 10 more years they trucks will be the least of peoples worry's and frankly atm should be everyone thinks governments are moving to evs to save the planet and to help the environment do a lot of in depth research and you'll find its for profits the manufacturing prosses that goes into making an ev is more than a modern toyota yaris puts out in its lifetime for example so they don't make a difference in the long run they should of targeted the vehicles that it would have made a difference and most of all im sure a good 85% of people want to have fun in life rather than being a boring and worrying about something none of us will ever see its about having fun not protesting if someone is doing that knowing that they are contributing to the planet ending in thousands of years i don't think they care about protests they would stop next to the protestors and reek them out in smoke while driving away laughing as they are standing there for nothing meanwhile the protestors are miserable complaining about life and what there protesting for and i'm sure your aware of how little doing that effects the environment compared to things that happen 100s of times a day for example a short 1 hour flight a 1 way trip is 10x as polluting as that but that doesn't matter as long as we are all driving evs well add on 10 years to the planet that well never see

Kyle miller (not verified)    January 10, 2019 - 4:24AM

Diesel pickup owners that want more "smoke" to be emitted, don't get torque modifications to produce that "smoke". More torque doesn't mean more smoke. And the black exhaust fumes are soot, not smoke. Extra spot is made from increasing fuel injection into the engine with modifications to the fuel injection pump or "chips" a lot of false information here. I'm sorry the public school system failed you so badly.

Dubbs (not verified)    January 22, 2019 - 9:50PM

In reply to by Kyle miller (not verified)

Correct. No modern pickup going back over a decade will puff coal, much less roll a continuous cloud of it in factory condition. Belching smoke doesn't produce power, that's unburned fuel you're looking at.

Al Castro    January 30, 2019 - 2:54AM

In reply to by Kyle miller (not verified)

Kyle my apologies. I didn’t take mechanics shop in public school. So I guess it was a failure, including the part about being accepted to an Ivy League school. I wasted my time with AP Civics and AP literature and AP Spanish then graduating with honors. Actually I went to the NYTimes and other sources to learn about coal rolling. I don’t know anyone who does. It was from these sources where I learned the term comes from competitions in state fairs in which a diesel operator creates more torque that produces more, I’ll call it exhaust, thus you get the black emission.

Carl Wilson (not verified)    August 2, 2020 - 7:00PM

In reply to by Al Castro

Okay but you're still wrong about that, maybe you should get your information about illegal car modifications from the people who work on them instead of the new york times. Congrats on the AP Spanish honors but maybe you should have taken an English class too

Al Castro    January 30, 2019 - 2:58AM

In reply to by Kyle miller (not verified)

Kyle my apologies. I didn’t take mechanics shop in public school. So I guess it was a failure, including the part about being accepted to an Ivy League school. I wasted my time with AP Civics and AP literature and AP Spanish then graduating with honors. Actually I went to the NYTimes and other sources to learn about coal rolling. I don’t know anyone who does. It was from these sources where I learned the term comes from competitions in state fairs in which a diesel operator creates more torque that produces more, I’ll call it exhaust, thus you get the black emission.

Bill Bastion (not verified)    January 12, 2019 - 12:38PM

Thanks for the article, Al. Your list is good, although I think your first bullet is a little misplaced and should be moved down. You are effectively suggesting that EV owners should alter their charging patterns to accommodate these loser clowns. Wrong message, especially when well placed fast chargers are important to widespread use and adoption of EVs. Yes, I am fortunate to have high speed home EV charging, and a new fast charging station less than a mile from my house in an EV friendly city. But I hit the open road sometimes and like to use fast chargers in more remote/rural locations to give me maximum utility for long range trips. I will not alter my patterns in light of these loser clowns.

But your other suggestions are good. If you run across these clowns, get in touch with the facility owner/operator. Get in touch with private security if available. And the local police or sheriff. And the tow company, absolutely. Definitely take photos or video, capturing the loser clowns but also their vehicles and importantly license plates if possible. Post their photos and license information broadly on social media. Find out who these loser clowns are, and find out who their employers are. Contact their employers; is this representative behavior that they expect from their employees? And if you have the capabilities or means, consider some novel civil litigation against these clowns. Maybe some small monetary damages to tie them up in court. But even better some injunctive relief to prohibit similar future conduct...and if they ignore/continue, will land them in some deep legal dodo.

So, ya, if I run across any of these clowns, they will not get the face to face confrontation that they might be looking for, but they will get a ton of blowback and it may alter the course of their lives notably and for the negative.

Al Castro    January 30, 2019 - 2:35AM

In reply to by Bill Bastion (not verified)

BILL: thanks so much for this. You are the reason I write. Feedback from folks like you make a difference as I see you actually read my articles that I pay even more attention to what and how I write. Bullet point comment is noted. Sometimes I make so many changes last minute sometimes I just rewrite the damn thing to success or failure. Since I wrote this or if you follow me on social media you’ll know the jackasses have moved to outright vandalism of the stations. Please be careful when public recharging. Thank you.

Dominic Cavale (not verified)    October 22, 2019 - 5:20PM

In reply to by Bill Bastion (not verified)

Great response! I don't own a Tesla, have an F350 as a secondary utility vehicle, and am invested in Tesla by owning stock. I'm bothered by this reckless and idiotic behavior. I subscribe to the mentality of live your life leave me alone. I have MS and am not very strong anymore. I will kick the crap out of wrongdoers in the courts and fully support you in your plight.

Dubbs (not verified)    January 22, 2019 - 9:57PM

" The batteries are now way too small and get way too hot as they are from use, they now have become way too dangerous to public mega supercharge"

Sorry, but this is BS. Total BS.

BEV mfrs know battery chemistry very well. Charge rate, battery temp and cell condition is monitored every minute the vehicle is operating. The onboard battery management in EVERY OEM electric car (not the one you threw it together in your backyard) will reduce the charge rate based no battery wear, heat, and other factors.

Al Castro    January 30, 2019 - 2:44AM

In reply to by Dubbs (not verified)

You didn’t read carefully, but I’ll give it context. People have been asking me lately about the possibility of supercharging a PHEV battery. My response is the industry is moving so quickly away from hybrid technology that there really isn’t infrastructure in place to accommodate the tiny batteries they have. In fact so much so, it’s moving toward intolerance. So you can’t supercharge a hybrid. With the exception of Nissan, most manufacturers have taken good steps of finding ways to cool a BEV battery, usually a combination of liquid and air cooling, but not just air cooling like Nissan has done with Leaf. So my comment was about the tiny batteries in PHEVs not BEVs, otherwise yeah, I’d be full of sh*t.

Dan Colestock, PE (not verified)    February 21, 2019 - 4:20PM

I back up Dobbs, it's irresponsible to worry PHEV owners with false information like this. All public chargers incorporate digital communication and charging is carefully monitored. For example, you can't drive away, EVs lock up while they are charging, for safety per international protocols and standards.
You might want it to be dangerous, but that doesn't make it so, Mr Castro. Why would companies design chargers and providers install and offer chargers that would deliberately damage expensive PHEVs and put the public in danger? PHEV and BEV owners can be confident that they can charge their vehicles safely as long as the charging station hardware - particularly the plug and cable - are not physically damaged or excessively covered with contamination (mud, salt water, etc).

Anthony D (not verified)    September 23, 2019 - 10:54PM

Imo every diesel truck parked in front of a charging station should be met with a Tesla parked in front of a diesel pump.

Brandon (not verified)    October 22, 2019 - 3:33AM

Being honest whoever wrote this sounds like a snow flake liberal and know nothing about diesel trucks and even though diesel motor have a close rank with the life size rc car there have been diesel cars that would put Prius cars and honestly teslas to shame ive seen diesel trucks run off used fry oil from mcdonalds and when all hell turns loose like when emps get dropped and terriost acts happen who will still be driving down the street and another thing is most tesla people are owned like slaves now they dont own their cars tesla can easily black list thier car and act like it never existed so it would be useless and diesel trucks also pull way more women wait did i say that right yeah "women" not the kind that have a load between their legs and anyway my diesel truck has lasted sence i was born so that says a lot

Wingnutt (not verified)    December 23, 2020 - 1:47PM

In reply to by slUtlifetrAmp2020 (not verified)

Pound for pound, any ICE vehicle has less immediate power compared to any electric vehicle of the same size. The electric may have a shorter range, but, the power rating from a dead stop, torque, is much higher than an ICE.

Nun of ya business (not verified)    October 22, 2019 - 4:43PM

This is by far one of the most stupidest things I have ever seen rolling coal does not show signs of cowardwness or power people do it for fun. It's like saying having a loud car means you hate people's well being and like trespassing on there land and burning a cross

Jumbo Slovak (not verified)    May 17, 2020 - 9:09PM

Unfortunately, like always, people who don't fully understand what they are saying. Do the research. Your "great" electric vehicles are being built by kids in poor countries for pennies per day to mine materials for all those awesome batteries needed. The manufacturing process of those batteries does more environmental harm than my dirty diesel ever will. And what about when the planet has 200 million tons of discarded lithium batteries lying around? What are you tree huggers gonna do with that? Cuz my planet wants no part of it, but you don't care enough to think about the truths behind electric power. The avg diesel owner owns their truck for over 200k miles, how many electric vehicles will be bought and buried in that same time frame. Get off your high horse and tell the truth.

Chad (not verified)    June 10, 2020 - 4:55PM

This is the most idiotic p.o.s. article I have ever read. So glad you guys are schooling them. I personally have never seen ice-ing. But some diesel owners also have Teslas. My favorite part " if someone is killed or injured" lmafo

Juan (not verified)    August 4, 2020 - 9:25PM

Haha. This is funny. I saw a libfag throwing up in downtown Asheville NC when a diesel truck pulled up alongside his Prius and blasted him. The guy threw up all over the inside of his Prius. Absolutely hilarious.

Commonsense (not verified)    October 11, 2020 - 1:36AM

NO LEGAL DIESEL SOLD TODAY IS ABLE TO ROLL COAL LEGALLY!! Mr. Castro, if your comment 'increasing torque" you mean removing ALL emmission controls and / or altering the ECU "chipping" to illegally increase engine hp and torque and thereby emmitting a gross, negligent amounts of particulate then yes, "increasing torque" can create "Coal Rolling" However, to ommit the fact that these are illegally modified vehicles is rather misleading. I agree local and federal emmissions laws should be followed and violaters prosecuted.