Red Deer RCMP remind drivers not to leave idling vehicles unoccupied

As the cold weather arrives in Central Alberta, Red Deer RCMP is reminding drivers to keep a close eye on their vehicle if they chose to leave it unoccupied.

In a press release, police say that about 33 per cent of vehicle thefts occur while a vehicle is idling or unoccupied.

“Vehicles left running and unattended present a crime of opportunity for criminals. It takes mere seconds for a thief to drive away in a vehicle that has been left unlocked and running,” the release states.

RCMP have provided several safety tips for drivers this winter:

-Never leave keys in an unlocked, unoccupied vehicle.

-Avoid idling an unoccupied vehicle.

-Use a steering wheel lock to deter thieves.

-Never leave spare keys or garage door openers in or around your vehicle.

-Never leave children or pets in an idling vehicle.

-Never leave valuables inside your vehicle where passerby can see them.

-If you leave your vehicle registration and insurance in your vehicle, hide it in a location that a thief would be unlikely to find.

-Install an anti-theft system in your vehicle if it doesn’t have one. Thieves are reluctant to steal vehicles if they can be recovered quickly.