During this time of year, many of us like to warm our cars up before taking off which is smart, some of us like to run inside of a store or our home quickly without grabbing the keys, and others may simply forget. Regardless, leaving your car running in Michigan is something that is done often.

Is it illegal for you to leave your car running? Well, the answer is both yes and no. Yes, you are allowed to leave your car running in front of your home, in a parking lot, in your driveway and many other places as there are no blanket laws for the entire state, but this may vary in your residential area. It is legal in the entire state to leave your car running in your driveway, but here's why you shouldn't ever leave it running.

Marshall Man Down

I understand starting your car up and letting the ice and snow defrost and melt off your vehicle, letting the heat blow inside, and for the heated seats to get warm but this is a risky pleasure if you aren't watching your vehicle diligently. To me, there is no reason to leave your car unattended no matter where you are.

As this woman from Michigan found out, leaving your vehicle running unattended could become a very bad day for you very quickly. Kelley Koenig from Marshall says she ran into her local Johnny's Market to get her daily Diet Coke to enjoy with lunch and left her car running at the Winston Park Gas Station, and that's when disaster struck.

As you can see above, a teenager who had stolen another vehicle waited for her to leave her vehicle before jumping in the driver's seat and taking off. She attempted to stop him, but her efforts failed and after authorities were called, they were in pursuit of the vehicle traveling over 100MPH before crashing into a semi-truck.

Really Running Rampant

Now, other than the obvious reason of having your car stolen, why shouldn't you leave your car running? Well, you're wasting gas, right? Yes, you may be running it for a short time and not burning a lot of gas in the moment, but all those little amounts add up and you waste maybe a 1/4 or more of a tank just letting your car sit idle.

Our atmosphere already has enough going on with the emissions from train derailments, industrial productions, and large gas outlets to deal with. The least we can do is run our cars just a little less than we do now to help with this ongoing issue. Along with the idea that some people may choose to escape the outside elements and seek refuge in your vehicle, presenting other safety issues.

Lastly, it's simple and almost something you think everyone would have on their mind. Cars are expensive, have lots of personal information, and important things inside of them so why would you leave all of that unattended? You never know who may be watching or waiting to take your change, steal important documents, or wrap themselves up in your backseat blanket.

The 25 Michigan Towns Where Your Stuff is Most Likely to Be Stolen

Using FBI crime data from 2019, we've identified the 25 cities in Michigan where you're most likely to have your stuff stolen (or set on fire.) Many on the list are no-brainers since they're some of our biggest cities, but there are a few on there that might surprise you.