Ohio Police are Giving Something to Drivers Who Warm Up Their Cars On Cold Mornings And It’s Not Hot Chocolate

Let me go on the record here by saying this is a very, very stupid law. I have now seen this law in multiple states and I believe it is one well-worth ignoring. First of all, it might make it easier to steal your car for the few minutes it is warming up… but if a theif really wants your ride, he’ll find a way to get it. Secondly, sitting out in the bitter cold while warming your car is a great way to get pneumonia for some people. Are the police willing to pay medical expenses on that? I doubt it. I don’t blame the police here – they didn’t make this dumb law. Meddling bureaucrats did.

From IJReview:

As much of the country is experiencing record cold in recent weeks, many people decide to warm up their cars before driving. However in Ohio, if you get out of the driver’s seat and go back inside, you’re committing a crime.

According to WOKV, Ohio has a law that bans people from leaving their cars unattended while the engine is running.

With temperatures falling into the single digits, many Ohioans choose to warm up their car while they stay warm inside the house. But that act could result in a $150 fine.

A 2004 law states no person is permitted to leave a vehicle unattended without first stopping the engine and removing the key from the ignition.

According to the Ohio Insurance Institute, the law was likely passed to prevent theft, but lawmakers may not have considered bone-chilling winters.

While the crime not only carries a fine, but also carries a misdemeanor charge as well. However, Ohio residents shouldn’t worry because the police really don’t enforce the law. Here’s what Middlestown Police Chief Rodney Muterspaw told WOKV.

“It’s not heavily enforced,” Muterspaw said. “A law might be black and white on paper, but you have to use common sense and you have to be reasonable when you enforce laws like this.”

Another police officer, Shawn Crank in Niles, Ohio, told WKBN that she doesn’t normally issue a ticket in cases like this. Instead, she normally just pulls the keys out of the ignition. Also, according to Officer Crank, the law can be enforced even if the car is your own driveway.

However, in a society governed by the rule of law, the laws must be strictly enforced and clear. If that’s not possible, then perhaps something is wrong with the law itself.

This law as written would primarily go after cars in your own driveway warming up before you go to work. If you want to cut down on thefts more, you should have very plain, common sense laws. Maybe you should pay officers more and have more patrols on wheels and on foot in neighborhoods as well. Make it harder on the criminals, not citizens. Slapping someone with a misdemeanor on this is outrageous as well. The whole thing strikes me as another way to make money off tickets. $150 fine for warming your car up in the morning. Really? We are taxed and ticketed on everything three ways to Sunday. Makes you long for a Tea Party, doesn’t it?

Terresa Monroe-Hamilton

Terresa Monroe-Hamilton is an editor and writer for Right Wing News. She owns and blogs at NoisyRoom.net. She is a Constitutional Conservative and NoisyRoom focuses on political and national issues of interest to the American public. Terresa is the editor at Trevor Loudon's site, New Zeal - trevorloudon.com. She also does research at KeyWiki.org. You can email Terresa here. NoisyRoom can be found on Facebook and on Twitter.

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