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Sunday, May 28, 2023

Is it authorized to depart your automobile home windows open?

You would possibly bear in mind a member of the family who would drive down the road, go away their keys within the ignition and the home windows down, stroll away from their automobile and into the retailers, and return to search out their automobile nonetheless sitting the place it was, with no high-quality flapping from beneath one of many windscreen wipers. These days are lengthy gone. 

  • It could be towards the legislation to depart your automobile’s home windows open in the event you’re not close to it
  • Fines range for the offence
  • Leaving your automobile unlocked may get you in hassle

As of late, in most elements of Australia, it’s unlawful to depart your automobile unlocked, or your home windows down. And don’t even take into consideration leaving your keys within the ignition. 

It’s all apparently within the purpose of decreasing automobile theft charges. Making it tougher to steal automobiles means there’s presumably much less stolen automobile paperwork to be carried out, whereas fining a driver for leaving the home windows down is seen as a “security” measure.

To be clear, you might be allowed to depart your home windows down a smidge. In some jurisdictions it’s 2 centimetres, whereas others permit as much as 5cm leeway.

Right here’s a rundown of the foundations throughout Australia:

New South Wales 

In NSW you possibly can go away your automobile’s window down 2cm, however you can not go away the automobile operating, or go away the home windows down, or go away the automobile unlocked, or go away anybody aged 16 or beneath within the automobile, or go away the important thing within the ignition, in the event you’re going to be greater than three metres away from the automobile.

If the home windows will be “secured”, they should be. Identical goes for doorways, if they are often locked, they must be.

Fines for failure to safe your automobile could also be relevant ($114).


Identical guidelines as NSW, however 5cm allowable window hole. Fines as much as 20 penalty items – or a staggering most penalty of $2874. It’d must be a cranky cop to attempt on that degree of penalty. 


Whereas there have been tales of individuals being fined for leaving their automobile home windows down in Vic, the wording within the Highway Security Penalties documentation doesn’t state something of the type to be penalty-worthy.

“Depart motorcar unattended with keys in ignition, motor operating, brakes not secured or doorways unlocked” – no point out of home windows, there – but the high-quality for that offence may value you $185. Studies recommend that Victoria has an allowance of 5cm for leaving your home windows down.

South Australia

For those who don’t need to must lock your automobile or put the home windows up, SA is your house. Underneath the state’s Highway Site visitors (Highway Guidelines—Ancillary and Miscellaneous Provisions) Laws 2014, it’s said that “Drivers in South Australia are exempt from rule 213 (Making a motorcar safe)”.


A lot the identical as a few of the different states, in that it’s the legislation to change off the automobile, take away the important thing from the ignition and be sure you don’t go away any minors (16 or beneath) within the automobile in the event you’re going to be greater than three metres from the automobile. 

Additionally clearly said within the rule: you could make certain the doorways are locked, and the home windows are secured (a window is ‘safe’ even whether it is open by as much as 2 centimetres). Nice: $87.

Western Australia

Once more, the foundations in WA are a lot the identical – three metres from the automobile, it’s essential to safe the doorways and home windows. Nice: $50.

However there’s a stipulation that, in the event you’re going to pay for parking, you don’t have to lock the automobile and put the home windows up.


Ensure you safe your automobile once you’re within the ACT. It follows a lot the identical guidelines as the remainder of the states – in the event you’re greater than three away the home windows should be up and the doorways should be locked. However it has an enormous potential high-quality for individuals who don’t do it – 20 penalty items, or $3200.


There doesn’t seem like any particular legislation round automobile safety within the Northern Territory, however Neighbourhood Watch NT means that drivers all the time lock their doorways and put their home windows up, and by no means go away the keys within the ignition.
Not meant as authorized recommendation. Test with the related roads authority in your state or territory.

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