Seven cars have been stolen this week as owners left them to warm up, New Castle County Police said today.
In all seven cases since Sunday, Cpl. Tracey Duffy said, the car owners were inside their homes when the "warm-up thieves" struck.
Leaving cars unattended makes vehicle owners easy targets for such thieves, she said.
Police remind residents that Delaware state law forbids leaving running cars unattended.
They also offer these tips to avoid becoming the next victim of "warm-up thieves":
- Carry your car keys wherever you go.
- Never leave keys in the ignition, even if you leave for a few seconds.
- Sit inside your car while it defrosts -- and never let it defrost unattended.
- The best method is to start your engine, turn on the defrost and let the engine warm while you clear snow or ice.
- Lock and secure your vehicle when exiting for any reason.