Shame on you, New Orleans! Heartless NOLA thives rob solar car team that holds world distance record

April 30, 2009 at 11:10 am

(Source: Tree Hugger & NOLA)

It wasn’t so long ago that we wrote about the Power of One (Xof1) Solar Car breaking a world distance record, and that’s the kind of story we like to write about. But via our friends at Autobloggreenwe learn that someone broke into the solar car’s support vehicle and stole an estimated $10,000 of stuff (including passports). What’s even sadder is that in the video below, you can hear Marcelo da Luz explain how he gave up his job, mortgaged his house, maxed his credit card, etc, to get this project off the ground.

Marcelo da Luz gave up his job, girlfriend and nearly a half-million dollars to build a solar-powered car and drive it all over the Americas, a trek that brought him and several international volunteers, following in a van, to New Orleans early Sunday evening.

But an hour after he parked on a busy, well-lighted French Quarter street, someone broke into the van and stole passports, laptops, credit cards, cash, a digital camera and a portable hard drive.

Despite the estimated $10,000 loss, da Luz seemed in high spirits the next morning, describing the break-in as a “dent” in his ecological barnstorming tour. He insisted that he was still enjoying his first visit to the Crescent City. After discovering the theft, da Luz and an assistant from the Netherlands trotted to a nearby tavern to “drown their sorrows.”

Despite his setback in New Orleans, da Luz plans to continue east to the Atlantic coast of Florida.

“I don’t hope anything bad happens to whoever did this or anything, ” he said. “I just hope their lives turn out better so they don’t need to do this to anyone else.”  

Spoke like a true gentleman, Mr. da Luz!