Don’t make defrosting vehicles an easy target this winter
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Motorists risk their vehicles being stolen if they leave them running and unattended while they defrost them.
As the overnight temperatures dip below zero thefts of unattended vehicles tend to rise as some drivers leave their engines running whilst they sit indoors waiting for windscreens to defrost and cars to warm up. This can present an ideal opportunity for thieves to strike.
Academy Coordinator Nicola Chamberlain, from Hertfordshire Constabulary’s Prevention First team, said: “Everyone dreads sitting in a freezing car whilst the windscreen is defrosting on a cold morning, but leaving it unattended with the engine running makes it an easy target for criminals. Unfortunately, there are unscrupulous individuals out there who will be on the look-out for these opportunities on icy mornings.”
It is also important that motorists defrost their windscreens fully before setting out on a journey. A frozen or partially defrosted windscreen makes it difficult to see properly, putting lives at risk.
Motorists caught driving with obscured vision can receive a £100 fine and three penalty points for careless driving. In more serious cases, or those that are contested in court, motorists face a maximum fine of £5,000, up to nine penalty points and could be banned from driving.
When defrosting a windscreen, please follow these simple steps:
Check the windscreen wipers are switched off before starting the ignition. Leaving them running when a windscreen is frozen can cause damage.
Start the engine and use the warm air blower on the windscreen.
Remove any snow from the vehicle.
Use a scraper and de-icer to remove ice from the windows. Avoid using boiling water which can cause windscreens to crack.
Stay with running vehicles while they defrost.
Checking the weather the night before and cover the windscreen with a blanket or windscreen protector the night before
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