First call I heard this morning when I went on duty; â€œReporting party stating that their car was just stolen, vehicle was warming up unattended in the driveway and when reporting party went outside the car was goneâ€.
We try to remind people of this every year when the weather starts turning cold. When it starts getting brisk in the mornings, people take chances warming up their cars in the morning while they tend to other things in the house. Or, they pull into a 7-11 to grab something and leave their car running in the parking lot. Everyone believes it wonâ€™t happen to them; that is until it happens to them. If you leave your car running unattended to warm up or leave it running while you dash into a store, itâ€™s not a matter of IF it will happen, itâ€™s a matter of WHEN it will happen.
People always say â€œI was only inside for a minuteâ€. It takes less than 5 seconds for someone to jump in the car and speed away. Not only with your car, but your laptop and purse or wallet on the seat too. Crooks cruise through neighborhoods on cold mornings looking for the telltale sign of steam coming from the exhaust of an unattended car. They dump a stolen vehicle theyâ€™ve driven a few days down the street and jump in yours, all warmed up and toasty for them. Theyâ€™ll use it a few days and then go hunting for a â€œfreshâ€ one. Or the school kids complaining about the long walk to school canâ€™t resist a free ride already running and waiting for them.
When the weather gets cold we get calls EVERY DAY about vehicles stolen while they were running unattended. Everyone believes â€œit wonâ€™t happen to meâ€. It doesnâ€™t matter where you live, affluent area or not, rural area or a tract home, it can and will happen sooner or later.
And don’t forget the expense and time to have the locks on your house re-keyed because the thief probably now has the keys to your home, business etc.
So the choice is yours; warm up your car by sitting in it a few minutes or by driving down the street slowly OR spend your morning calling the police, insurance company, banks, credit card companies etcâ€¦â€¦â€¦