The RCMP is warning residents about the dangers of leaving unattended vehicles idling.
Since October 1, there has been 1420 vehicles stolen in Alberta RCMP jurisdictions.
“There definitely has been an increase [in stolen vehicles]. It only takes 30 seconds for someone to enter a running vehicle and drive away with it. We have seen these thefts happen from gas stations, malls, grocery store parking lots and from residences,” says Corporal Ron Bumbry.
He adds, “we are asking citizens to never leave a running vehicle unattended. If your keys must be in the ignition to warm it up you should remain in your vehicle.”
Bumbry says that stolen vehicles have an impact on police resources.
“There’s been over 10, 500 vehicles stolen [from RCMP jurisdictions] this year. Each of those requires an investigation and represents a financial lost to the owners. Many of these are entirely preventable.”
Besides not leaving your vehicle idling the police say other things you can do include installing a remote starter, use a steering wheel lock and to never leave spare keys or garage door openers in or around your vehicle.