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Wis. city will ticket motorists for warming up their cars

Published On: Jan 30 2013 03:27:33 PM CST
Updated On: Jan 21 2013 06:45:00 AM CST
LA CROSSE, Wis. -

If cold weather has you starting your car early to get it warmed up in La Crosse, there's a chance you could be ticketed.

La Crosse has an ordinance against leaving an unattended vehicle running.

It only applies to vehicles on the street or in other public places.

The fine is $114.

Police say the ordinance is in place to protect people.

"Especially this time of the year, when it's cold.  They want to go out and warm their vehicles up and what they do is leave their keys in the vehicle," says Lieutenant Patrick Hogan of the La Crosse Police Department.  "Vehicle's unlocked, then it's easy for someone to come along that maybe didn't have intentions of stealing a vehicle, and they see it and see that it's an easy ride home."

Police say using an electric starter is okay, because keys aren't left in vehicles that way.

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