Vehicle: Car: Alarm
Car alarm law   (+3, -3)  [vote for, against]
Stop the false alarms, get a reponse to real ones

Maybe this is a Latin American thing, but it seems like there's always a car alarm going off somewhere in town. They're massively irritating (I think they design those sounds to be hard to ignore, hence annoying) and don't stop people breaking into cars. I recently saw a guy trying to drive off in a car with the alarm sounding. On a crowded street, nobody paid any attention. I insisted that he show me his ID and registration, and he grudgingly did. It was his car, but even he seemed annoyed that anyone would pay any attention to the alarm.

What's more, these things seem to go off on the slightest provocation. I'd think of an attempt to steal a car as involving forcing entry, breaking a window perhaps: something unmistakable and fairly violent. It seems exceptionally paranoid on the part of the electronics to see evil in a firework 500m away, a person not-quite-touching the vehicle, or a light breeze. It must be possible (easy, I'd have thought) to make a system that only responds to actual attacks.

So, two problems: people buy and install car alarms that are insanely sensitive, annoying everyone when they shrill for *hours* without the slightest provocation; and, nobody responds when a car alarm does go off.

My solution: pass a law that police and community/neighbourhood guards, deputising the public as they see fit, be allowed to attack any vehicle that is making an unholy racket without good cause (a real theft attempt). Sticks, stones, crowbars, whatever it takes until the thing shuts up (probably writing off the car in the process).

One: people will ensure that their car alarms are set so that they will go off is a lock is forced or a window broken, but not if a butterfly flaps its wings in Indonesia;

Two: anyone who does break into a car will rapidly be encircled by an angry mob of local reidents, baying for radiator fluids to exact revenge for the disturbance. They come to attack what they think to be a hypersensitive alarm system, but they're not going to let the villain just walk away. I know I'd be a lot less likely to try and grab a car stereo if I thought a bunch of big guys with crowbars might be mere seconds away.
-- swyves, Nov 25 2006

What if vandals beat your car for no reason and then claimed the alarm was going off and they had every right to? I mean there is no way of proving when the was or wasn't going off, and within no time even if car theft rates went down, vandals would beat any car they wished without the fear of being punished. Is something that encourages violence towards cars really a good thing?
-- acurafan07, Nov 25 2006

Ah, but it's only police and officials (and deputies in their company) who are allowed to smash up an offending car.
-- swyves, Nov 25 2006

I doubt many police officers have nothing better to do than beat the crap out of a car. But i guess amateur thieves would still be deterred. [+]
-- acurafan07, Nov 25 2006

Perhaps a better solution than my evil car alarmer, but I'm not sure it's right on the money.

I don't think there are enough police officers to make much of a difference as far as the number of car alarms are concerned, and I would hope they can find more important things to do than beat the crap out of a car.

Perhaps if we got rent-a-cops, security guards, or certain off-duty military forces involved... but the more people you include in the list, the more likely vandalism is to take the place of a fair solution.

I'm also not sure what you're going to do about klutzes in the parking lots, and bored people who try to slam into cars for fun. Presumably, the car owners will respond to turn off their car alarm before too much damage occurs?
-- ye_river_xiv, Nov 25 2006

Ah -- maybe a regional thing. Here in Ecuador there are thousands of police and municipal security guards all over the place; but as they have no way to silence random car alarms, and know that 99.9% of the time they mean nothing, they just carry on hanging around not doing anything. I heard you don't see so many police just standing about or walking down the street in e.g. USA.
-- swyves, Nov 25 2006

Yes, most police in the US are driving around doing nothing (in a big American car, a big American motorcycle, or maybe a bicycle or horse in some cities) until they see something suspicious or get a call on the radio. We don't believe in walking here in the States.
-- discontinuuity, Nov 25 2006

//We don't believe in walking here in the States.//

God, no! Please don't suggest such a thing again.
-- NotTheSharpestSpoon, Nov 25 2006

All the vandal has to do when he sees the mob coming is start beating the crap out of the car himself, and say he got there first. Bones.
-- wittyhoosier, Nov 25 2006

CRAP! I went to edit my anno and I deleted it so now Quests looks a litte out of order.

What it said:

The day I come out to my car and a band of cops are beating the hell out of it is the same day the cops have a serious lawsuit on thier hands.
-- Chefboyrbored, Nov 26 2006

random, halfbakery