Local News

Durham Thieves Full of Coins, Not Hot Air

Posted May 3, 2007

— Police want to know who’s stealing from coin-operated machines that fill tires with air.

Since March 18, more than a dozen machines were hit at convenience stores and automotive businesses.

Investigators believe the thieves have used several different vehicles during the thefts.

CrimeStoppers will offer a cash reward for tips that lead to an arrest in the case.


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  • sixpointedbadge May 4, 2007

    Not only that but if the machine was stolen it is a good bet that it will not be replaced. It gets harder each day to find any station to get air for a slow leak. Best bet is to go buy one for yourself (if you can afford a small electric compressor) and let the bad guys try to rip off something else for a buck.

  • Opinionated One May 4, 2007

    It's sad that someone would take the time and energy to steal a maybe $1.50 from a machine. I bet the cost of gas to drive around to the dozen machines was double/tripple what they stole.

  • ghimmy47 May 4, 2007

    Business today is about money, not customer relations. From "outsourcing" offshore so the factory owner gets richer while employees lose their home to charging for what used to be free, it's about gouging all that's possible. Yes it takes a compressor and electricity to run it, but stations used to have a garage section that needed a compressor anyway. Free air was a service that got people to stop and developed a relationship with the place. Now they don't care.

  • gcfarms May 3, 2007

    Where are the machines that charge you a quarter? All of them around here are 75 Cents. Now that is highway robbery(pun intended).

  • headlong May 3, 2007

    *LOL* Milky...now that was funny

  • GWALLY May 3, 2007

    Air and water in their original state ARE free.....usable forms of either require energy......that ain't free.
    Crude oil that comes from the earth is free also......usable form (gasoline, etc.) are not.......!!!

  • pheurtematte May 3, 2007

    ROFL Milky

  • MiIky May 3, 2007

    It is very true that some type of energy is necessary to push the air into the tire. I have tried a funnel and, even with so much air outside of the tire and so little inside of the tire, I couldn't convince any of the outside air to enter the tire. In fact, what little air was in the tire decided to leave as well. It is now my belief that the quarter has something to do with this process.....also p=(v/m) does something too, but, I think it's mostly the quarter.

  • StraightNifonged May 3, 2007

    All air compressors require energy to run, be it reciprocating, rotary screw, or centrifugal. They are not cheap to buy or run so it makes since to charge a quarter or two.

  • Travised May 3, 2007

    Most of those the coin is the "activation" and the pump is inside. Sounds like quarter theives.