Traffic Tip: Don't leave motor vehicles improperly unattended

By David Brogger
March 17, 2013 at 10:04 p.m.
Updated March 16, 2013 at 10:17 p.m.

This week's traffic tip Discusses unattended vehicles regulations in the Texas Transportation Code 545.404.

Why this specific code and how does relate to driving in Victoria?

An unattended motor vehicle is one that is parked and unoccupied. Often we see cars that are parked and left unattended with the motor running or keys left in the ignition.

Some motorists think this is OK as long as the doors are locked or if they are close enough to see the vehicle, but this is not true.

In Texas, your car is improperly parked if it does not comply with all of the requirements listed below.

The operator of a vehicle who is found to be in violation of this law can be cited by an officer, but the preferred situation is for the vehicle to be properly parked. This will also help prevent a motor vehicle theft.

545.404. Unattended motor vehicle. An operator may not leave the vehicle unattended without:

(1) Stopping the engine;

(2) Locking the ignition;

(3) Removing the key from the ignition;

(4) Setting the parking brake effectively and

(5) If standing on a grade, turning the front wheels to the curb or side of the highway.

The Victoria Police Department Traffic Safety Unit invites citizens to inform us of any traffic issues that you observe. The easiest way to do this is go to our website,, then go to the VPD Customer Service Request tab in the center of the page and follow the directions.

If you have a traffic law question, contact Senior Police Officer David Brogger, Victoria Police Department Traffic Safety Unit, at 361-485-3700.



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