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This cop car gadget gets crooks in a tangle

Industry news

Peoria, Arizona - The standard way of ending a high-speed pursuit in the United States is to bump the fleeing suspect's car at a slight angle with the nudge bar that's fitted to all police vehicles for that purpose. Correctly done, it induces a violent spin that stops the fleeing car in its tracks; get it wrong and you could flip both vehicles.

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All you do is drive up behind the fleeing vehicle and deliberately get the webbing tangled in one of its rear wheels. Picture: Police Bumper

Now an Arizona startup calling itself Police Bumper has come up with a much more controllable way of stopping the bad guys. It's called the Grappler, and it looks like a heavy-duty bicycle rack mounted on the front bumper of the vehicle.

But when the two arms drop down to just above road level there's a simple net of yellow webbing strung between them. Then all you do is drive up behind the fleeing vehicle and deliberately get the webbing tangled in one of its rear wheels.

On a rear-wheel drive car, that's enough to do the job - quite often, it rips the tyre off the rim - but even with a front-wheel drive car, all you do is drop back and hit the brakes; the webbing net is attached to a long tether. It stops the suspect's car in straight line, so you can use it in traffic, which you can't do with a nudge manoeuvre unless you're filming a Die Hard movie, and it'll even work on a trailer.

Now all the Police Bumper guys have to do is convince the cops.

Motoring.co.za

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