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Canberra Today 3°/5° | Friday, August 19, 2022 | Digital Edition | Crossword & Sudoku

Police: Criminals keep record of unattended, frosty cars

ACT Police: Notebook information tracking address, time of car left unattended

A STRING of frosty mornings has led to Canberrans being reminded to supervise vehicles while defrosting, as criminals target unattended, idling vehicles.

Police are aware of cases where offenders are watching homes and keeping records of vehicles left running while unattended, with the aim of returning to steal them in future.

Detective Acting Inspector Jason Dziubindki said despite annual messages, people continue to leave their cars unattended.

“Last winter – we recorded at least 21 vehicles stolen while they were outside homes, warming up and defrosting, without the driver present. And already this winter police have received reports of more vehicles being stolen this way,” says Detective Dziubinski.

“Only last week we had a defrosting vehicle stolen from the front of a home in Campbell. This vehicle was then used in a string of other serious offences throughout the morning.”

“We are again urging drivers to remain in their vehicle for the few minutes it takes to properly defrost the windows. If you need to clear your windows in a hurry – free ice scrapers are available at all police stations,” says Detective Dziubinski.

Drivers are also being reminded it is an offence and a very risky act to drive with foggy or icy windows.

Senior Constable Aaron Cherry said all vehicles must have clear windscreens, side windows and rear windows before driving off.

“While it is an offence to have an obscured view out of a vehicle, attracting a fine of $205, we would much prefer people did the right thing, waited a few minutes until all windows are clear and then moved off,” says Senior Constable Cherry.

“If you only partially remove the frost, or drive off while there is still mist on the inside of the windows, then you are putting yourself, your passengers and other road users at risk.”

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