From the website of the City of New York: “You can report an idling vehicle, other than an authorized emergency vehicle, that is parked with its engine running for more than three minutes, or parked next to a school with its engine running more than one minute.”
In other words, you can receive a ticket if you let an engine run for more than three minutes while your vehicle is parked.
In Laguna Beach and elsewhere, I have seen vehicles, cars and trucks, with engines running while stopped for 20 to 30 minutes. Since there appears to be a problem with a change in climate around the world, with the destruction of 400 acres of forest per day, and the refusal of certain segments of the U.S. population to deny that there is a problem, perhaps the City Council of Laguna Beach might consider copying the law from New York.
The naysayers and tobacco industry said that to deprive cigarette addicts from smoking in long, steel tubes seven miles in the air was unfair. Eventually, governments could no longer ignore reality, and prohibiting smoking in airplanes, restaurants and bars became the norm, and not many suffered because of this.
The auto industry fought tooth and nail to prevent regulations that would require seat belts in vehicles, proof notwithstanding, that such laws would save many lives. Fortunately, common sense prevailed and we always buckle up when driving.
So, how about if the City of Laguna Beach addresses this problem? The city, to its credit, has outlawed smoking on the streets, so can we go a bit further and let citizens know that it is not right to sit in a vehicle with the engine running, polluting the air, and contributing to a degradation of the climate?
Common sense has worked. May it continue.
David E. Kelly, Laguna Beach