1,193 cars were torched in France as part of a criminal tradition of sorts. Each year on New Year's Eve, criminals set parked cars on fire for "fun." On Jan. 2, Boston.com reported that this is the first time in three years that the number of torched cars was released. The numbers were kept quiet in an attempt to lessen the crimes. However, the number is 2009 -- 1,147 -- proves that the "quiet method" didn't work.
"Like many countries, France sees cars set on fire during the year for many reasons, including gangs hiding clues of their crimes and people making false insurance claims. But car-torching took a new step in France when it became a way to mark the arrival of the New Year (sic)," Boston.com reported.
The 1,193 cars torched were empty and no one was hurt but that doesn't make any more acceptable in any way. Torching cars has been a way for revelers to protest for years. It is believed that various groups participate in these acts each year. In fact, it is believed that different regions are in competition to see how many cars they can torch on New Year's Eve.
According to the report, social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter allow revelers to compare notes, so to speak. As long as there is "healthy" competition, the car torching will likely continue.
The 1,193 cars that were torched likely won't be the last. This "tradition" has been ongoing for quite a few years.
© Effie Orfanides 2013