Originally Posted by Keeve
The bridges and tunnels within New York City (such as the Battery Tunnel and Verrazano Bridge, not the NJ border crossings) have gates on them, and will not lift until the toll is paid.
By the way, the gate is at windshield height, so I don't think it would be very smart to just try to drive straight through.
Way back when I-95 still had tolls on the stretch through Connecticut, I found myself at an automated booth with no cash. I had stopped with my driver's window next to the coin hopper, and I noticed that the front of my hood was already under the gate (cars were bigger then). So I inched forward. The gate touched the windshield, then hitched upward as it squeaked along the glass, leaving a thin, red-and-white streak along the way. Once the gate was on my roof, I drove through.
A year or two later, I was at a tollbooth in NYC. Again, no coins for the hopper. (It may or may not have been the same car; I don't remember.) As I inched forward, the gate touched my windshield and then quickly snapped off. I remember thinking it looked like balsa wood as it flew past me.
Oddly, I had no repercussions from either incident. This was before robot cameras were common, but they weren't unheard of, and there were attendants in adjacent booths both times.
Kids: Do not try this at home — I mean, at toll booths.