Apparently, delinquent parking tickets are a big problem, because inventors keep coming up with ways to make absolutely certain that violators pay. It’s not enough these days to have a paper ticket underneath the windshield wiper of a violator’s car. First there was the boot, which rendered the offending vehicle immobile. And now, meet Barnacle, a parking ticket that driver’s can’t ignore.
From CBS Philadelphia:
“The Barnacle definitely gets your attention,” says Kevin Dougherty, president of Ideas That Stick.
You can spot it covering the glass from more than a block away. What you can’t see is anything from the front seat of your car.
“It attaches to the windshield using commercial-grade suction cups that provide 750 lbs of force per suction cup. There is no brute force way of getting it off,” Dougherty explains.
The Barnacle is placed by a parking enforcement officer, but it’s removable by you — once you cover the cost of the violation.
“It’s got a motorist-release feature which allows people to pay over the phone and enter a code on the Barnacle keypad,” Dougherty says. “The device then automatically releases and the person drops it off within 24 hours to a predetermined location.”
Not only does Barnacle have a cleverly appropriate name, but the product boasts a tamper-proof alarm and GPS, in case a scofflaw tries to take the law into her own hands and have the vehicle towed away. And don’t try any funny business: Dougherty claims that if someone tried to remove the Barnacle himself, he would remove the windshield as well, and that’s never a good thing.
The Ideas That Stick website acknowledges the inefficiencies of the parking enforcement process, as well as the often overlooked fact that both violators and authorities are people who deserve a safe and better way. The site promises several advantages of the Barnacle over the traditional boot, including lightweight materials, fast and safe curbside deployment, an environmentally friendly design, stackability, noticeability, and – perhaps best of all – no damage to tires.
Ideas That Stick also boasts that Barnacle simplifies the parking enforcement process:
We feel that current parking enforcement methods are cumbersome, archaic and inefficient. We understand that space is a limited resource and demand is high for convenient parking. Effective parking enforcement and collection activities are a critical part of maintaining an efficient parking management solution.
User friendly and lightweight, it allows the motorist to quickly remove the device and be on their way after paying the necessary fines over the phone. The Barnacle makes the process easier for all parties involved: the administration, enforcement personnel and the violator.
Check out this video which demonstrates the Barnacle in action – and even coins a new word: “barnacled.”
Enforcement authorities in Salt Lake City, Ft. Lauderdale, and Allentown, Pennsylvania are already using the Barnacle, and naturally, Ideas That Stick want to expand their product into as many jurisdictions as possible.
Ideas That Stick took their invention to the National Parking Association trade show in Atlanta, as the company chronicled on their Facebook page. Naturally, the trolls followed online – including one in particular who claims to be able to beat the device.
Let’s face it: Barnacle is a bittersweet invention, because it’s a testament to American free enterprise in action, but at the same time it allows government to be in your business in yet another way. But regardless of which side you come down on, good for Dougherty and the rest of the folks at Ideas That Stick for creating a more efficient and innovative way to solve the dilemma of parking enforcement.