SPD: If you don't want your car stolen, don't leave it unattende - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

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SPD: If you don't want your car stolen, don't leave it unattended while warming up

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SPOKANE, Wash. -

We all know it could happen to us, but sitting in a freezing car while it warms up just doesn't sound as cozy as sitting in our house while it warms up. 

Nonetheless, it's that time of year when we, and law enforcement, warns you that as cold as it may be, it's still not a good idea. 

Spokane Police say in recent years they've seen an increase in stolen cars as a result of people leaving them unattended while warming up. 

"Well, I lock my car, though! It's safe!" you might be saying. Not according to SPD Captain Brad Arleth. 

“Locking your unattended vehicle while it is warming up is not enough to keep it from being stolen," Arleth said. "It only takes a few seconds for someone to steal a car or truck that is sitting unoccupied. In addition, people are faced with the possibility of a burglary at their home as their house keys are often on their vehicle key ring.”

And believe it or not, it's not just at people's homes where cars are swiped. SPD says they commonly receive reports of cars being stolen while left running unattended at gas stations, convenience stores, and ATMs. 

"Well, what can I do then?"

Simple. Spokane Police have offered the following tips to help you prevent your car from being stolen: 

  • Park in well-lighted areas and always lock your car when it is unattended.
  • Never leave your keys in the ignition or elsewhere in the vehicle.
  • If you have a garage, use it rather than parking outside where your vehicle is more vulnerable.
  • Don’t leave packages, purses, electronics, bags/briefcases, automatic garage door openers, personal papers and mail or other items in plain view in your vehicle which can invite a break-in and lead to vehicle theft, home burglary and identification theft.
  • Never hide a second set of keys in your vehicle. Extra keys can easily be found, especially by experienced thieves who know the hiding places in vehicles.

Stay warm, everyone! In and outside of your car!

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