There have been some severe storms in Texas, a land where it’s almost always hot and the sun has been consistently baking the pastures, lately. Storms have made Texans who park their cars outside resort to their most creative measures to prevent hail damage, like strapping air mattresses and bubble wrap to them.
There’s documentation of people’s attempts to protect their cars all over social media, from pinning down outdoor cushions to covering them in comforters. Some tried cardboard, others tried blankets. Others went for styrofoam and yoga mats, because something is better than nothing, maybe. And the shots Dallas news station WFAA got of cars covered in random protective items in a local parking lot look like a bad preschool collage project.
But the saga didn’t stop at the homemade, and sometimes inflatable, car armor. Just in time for the latest round of thunderstorms this week, WFAA published a video in which it tested how well the hail protection would work. The station recruited a high-school baseball team, a police officer and a physics professor, and started throwing pitches in a salvage yard to simulate baseball-sized hail.
The whole thing, truly, is a masterpiece, if only for the fact that it took someone incredibly creative to think and say out loud, “Let’s go destroy a vehicle in the salvage yard for the newscast tonight. That should be good.”
The unscientific verdict? That if the only things you have are blankets or yoga mats to protect from the hailstorms in the forecast, they’re probably best doing what they were intended to do: be blankets or yoga mats. But if you’ve got pool inflatables or air mattresses, they might just work—even if your car ends up on social media because of how goofy it looks.
Of course, that part doesn’t matter. You’ll have the honor of the last laugh when your car survives the storm, and that was the idea.