Arizona Woman Gifted A Ticket By Cops For Using Inflatable Grinch As HOV Passenger

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“It came without ribbons, it came without tags. It came without packages, boxes, or bags.” – The Grinch

An Arizona driver could quote that famous line from How The Grinch Stole Christmas to describe a ticket she received after trying to dupe authorities in the two-passenger minimum HOV lane requirement.

The Arizona Department of Public Safety says the driver was spotted in the HOV lane on Tuesday with what they thought was a “suspicious looking passenger.” Turns out it was an inflatable Grinch that one might see on a front yard.

I know the flu is pretty bad this year and may turn some people green, but not THIS green.


In a statement, the Arizona DPS said that, “While we appreciate the festive flair, this is illegal & the driver received a citation for the HOV violation.”

The high-occupancy vehicle lanes, also known as HOV, are restricted for vehicles that have at least two passengers or more. They are meant to help reduce traffic congestion and encourage carpooling as more cities have introduced them across the country.

Every once in a while we hear about stories of drivers trying to outsmart authorities with fake passengers. And I get it, sometimes you just don’t want to drive with someone else. Bob from Accounting can get pretty annoying hearing him re-tell the same stories day in and day out in the HOV lane.

For some reason it appears that Arizona residents REALLY don’t like the HOV lane though. A 62-year-old man tried using a skeleton with a bucket hat to get by in the HOV lane. Needless to say, it didn’t work.


I love stories like the woman using a green Grinch because there’s always two ways to react.

On one hand, her plan to use an inflatable green Grinch is so absurd that I feel like the cop should have just let her go. Especially at Christmas time. Almost like an ‘A for Effort’ type thing.

But then I can see the cop being like, I’d love to let you go without a ticket, but this is so BLATANTLY obvious that I can’t just not do anything at all because then I’ll get in trouble.

We’ll see if the driver sees the ticket as any sort of deterrence.

If not, maybe a bearded, plump white man with a giant red hat may work better this time of year than a Grinch.

Written by Mike Gunzelman

Mike “Gunz” Gunzelman has been involved in the sports and media industry for over a decade. He’s also a risk taker - the first time he ever had sushi was from a Duane Reade in Penn Station in NYC.

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