If your windshield becomes obscured, pulling over to clear it off sounds like a no-brainer move. But one TikToker is saying that you could be putting yourself in harm’s way in exchange for a smudge-free view.
TikTok user @danitrapani1 regularly parks underneath a bottlebrush tree near her San Francisco office to go to work. As she departs to go home in the evening she usually has to use her wipers to clear any fallen bottlebrushes off her windscreen. A few days ago something unusual happened.
Danitra recently posted a video that has received nearly a thousand views that describes how she seems to have narrowly escaped a robbery attempt. According to her when she turned on her wiper blades that day her windscreen was covered with a thick soapy film. Suspecting something was wrong with the car she called her husband who informed her not to get out of the car to clear the film from the screen.
@danitrapani1 PSA!! Pleae be aware of this scam. #safety #psa #besafe ♬ original sound – danitrapani
“I’ve seen this as a scam,” he reportedly told her and advised her to get to a gas station if she was able. Almost immediately after she reached the gas station, Danitra claimed that another vehicle arrived with a driver wearing a “ski mask up under his eyes.” Though she couldn’t be certain the car had pursued her there, Danitra says she was frightened that she was being set up for a robbery or worse. “That was so terrifying,” she says in the video.
Social media users have warned about such set-ups in the past, with posts telling drivers, especially women, to be wary of objects placed on the windshield designed to lure drivers out of their locked vehicles in order to rob them or steal their car. However, according to CNN, these stories are often just urban myths, and our often used to gain likes and views on various social media.
Many commenters on Danitra’s video took this to be the case in her story. User @mikewalsh185 couldn’t understand why she didn’t wash off the soap with her own wiper fluid saying, “I wonder why the windshield wiper fluid and the wipers did not just clean your windshield off.” Another commenter, @bzoffka asked, “I don’t really understand what this is accomplishing. soap on your windshield? Are they hoping you get out to clean it or something?”
The majority of the comments seemed to be supportive and thankful, such as @denigal21 who wrote, “Thankful you’re safe and grateful you shared this.” Nevertheless, Danitra posted another video the next day responding to commenters’ questions and addressing some negative comments.
Danitra says in the second video that the substance under her wiper blades may have been another substance than soap. “I have no idea what the substance was,” she explained. She stated that she assumes they applied whatever it was directly to her wiper blades without opening the car.
As for the negative comments, she says “that sucked” but she hopes her video reched “the people it needed to.”
The Daily Dot has reached out to @danitrapani1 for further comment.
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*First Published: Jul 10, 2023, 11:01 pm CDT
Beau Paul is a freelance writer from Austin, Texas. Beau also wrote narrative and dialog for the gaming industry for several years before becoming an entertainment journalist.