Ketchum's Idling Law Two Years Later


By Andrew Reed

Ketchum, Idaho (KMVT-TV / KTWT-TV) An idling ordinance in the city of Ketchum went into place two years ago. There was a one–year grace period to learn about the new three minute car idling ordinance.
While not many drivers have been caught breaking the law.

With below freezing temperatures, your car can be very cold inside... And you can experience an icy windshield. Most of the time people let their cars warm up for more than ten minutes, but in the city of Ketchum you have three minutes to get that heat going.

Gene Ramsey, Blaine County Sheriff says, "what we do under the ordinance, we actually give them one warning a year, and then we issue a citation."

The purpose of the ordinance is to improve regional air quality, and promote an environmentally friendly community.

Ramsey adds, "it is a tourist community and actually a healthy community. Therefore, once people are made aware of it they usually comply. We haven't had to give too many citations."

If you do leave your vehicle running for more than three minutes, law enforcement can issue you a first offense penalty of $25 and a second offense of $52.

"I don't understand why they would idle in the first place, personally I don't idle at all, and I think it's an education thing," adds Max Monahan, who's for the ordinance.

It does exempt vehicles left running while stopped at traffic lights, construction zones, and on homeowners driveways. The sheriff department reports less than 50 citations have been issued since the ordinance went into effect in 2010.

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