With wind chills and temperatures in the negatives, it sure is nice to go from a warm house to a warm car. But is it illegal to idle your car in your own driveway in Owatonna?

The answer: yes if you do it for longer than 15 minutes. That's right you could get fined for idling your car in your own driveway or any residential zones. Not only can you not do it longer than 15 minutes, you can only do it every five hours.

The official ordinance reads: "No person shall have or allow a motor vehicle engine to idle in residential districts of this City, as defined in Ordinance No. 827 (Owatonna Zoning Ordinance), for longer than fifteen (15) minutes. No idling period shall be repeated at shorter intervals than five (5) hours."

This includes cars with remote starts - that engine is still in idle even if a key isn't in the ignition.

What do you think of this ordinance? Have you ever been ticketed?


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