“George Pakenham, director-producer of the film Idle Threat, appeared in Chatham in January as part of the Eco-Film of the Chathams series.
“Mr. Pakenham has approached more than 2500 drivers who had been idling for longer than 3 minutes and asked them to turn their engines off.
“He reports a 78 to 80 percent success rate. His goal is to eradicate engine idling, making it as socially unacceptable as passive smoking.
“It seems a majority of Americans believe that they should idle their vehicle for a few minutes before driving in freezing weather.
“The opposite is true. Idling actually increases overall engine wear. Moreover, frequent restarts are no longer hard on a car’s engine and battery. For a comfortable ride, starting off slowly is the best way to get your vehicle’s heating system delivering warmer air faster. More importantly, idling pollutes the air and harms health. Even just sitting in an idling car means you are breathing in dirty exhaust that leaks into the car cabin. Any warmth you may get from a car heater is not worth the damage to your health.”