MADISON COUNTY, Ala. - A Madison County man started his truck to warm up on a cold morning. But minutes later, he went back outside to find his driveway empty.
It's something that has law enforcement agencies warning residents of.
"It is habit for people to go out start their vehicles and let it warm up," says Lt. Donny Shaw with the Madison County Sheriff's Office. "That's a perfect opportunity for a criminal to make an easy theft."
And it's something that only takes seconds to happen. "Once you walk into where ever you are at, once you walk in and close the door there is an opportunity because you don't have direct contact with your vehicle anymore," says Shaw.
Most may think it's safe to leave their cars running in their own neighborhood. But that's actually where the most vehicles get stolen. "Yeah its cold but do what you can to take care of those possessions. Don't make it easy for someone to take your stuff that you worked hard to get."
WHNT News 19 is taking action to show you safer ways to warm your vehicle without taking this risk. Remote start systems are a much safer way to warm up your vehicle.
That way you are not leaving the key in the vehicle and somebody getting in your vehicle and driving off with it. The vehicle can also stay locked the entire time.
Even if someone decides to break a window to take advantage of the running vehicle, the key isn't actually there. So the would-be thief ends up in a shut-down vehicle that won't go anywhere.
Some of the systems even allow you to use your cell phone to start it up.