As the winter wears on and the weather gets colder, many of us want to warm up our vehicles before we leave the house each morning.
In addition to increasing the risk of vehicle theft, apparently this is against the law.
After a recent rash of cars being stolen after they were left running Jason Goorevitz, an outreach officer with Parkville's police precinct, sent an email to remind citizens that leaving an unattended vehicle running, with the keys in the ignition can result in fines and even the penalty of points on your license.
"In the past week alone, five vehicles have been stolen when owners left them unattended, with engines running and the keys in the ignition," the email, issued by the Baltimore County police department, said.
"In addition to the increased risk of vehicle theft, leaving a vehicle alone with the engine running is against the law. Officers can issue a ticket that is accompanied by a $70 fine and one point against your driving record if they see an unattended car," the email said.
Officer Jeff Schaub, who works in traffic enforcement at Parkville Precinct, said that it's not often that a ticket is written for the infraction but that it could happen.
"Not a lot of guys write that up," Schaub said. He also explained that getting a ticket is less likely when a vehicles owner uses an automatic car starter because typically those vehicles can't be driven without a key in the ignition.
"I think in that case, the spirit of the law is being fulfilled," Schaub said.
Do you start your car up in the mornings to get it warm before you leave for work? Did you know that it could result in fines and points? Is this fair? Tell us in the comments.