Because many people, especially those in apartments, don't have access to a garage, cars must be parked on the street overnight.
Unfortunately this also makes them targets for car thieves.
That's where car alarms come in to play.
With their loud sirens and flashing lights, they're supposed to make excellent deterrents.
There's just one problem..
they drive people crazy.
Since most of them seem to have a hair trigger, they're set off if the slightest bit of movement is detected.
This doesn't sit well with the neighbors, many of whom wake up several times a night because of noisy car alarms.
It's not that anyone wants to encourage car theft, but a sane person can only take so much.
It's estimated that ninety percent of all car alarm activations are not due to theft at all.
In 2001, eighty three percent of the complaints to New York City Police Department's Quality of Life Hotline were in regard to car alarms.
In fact, ninety one percent of New Yorkers surveyed believed that noises due to car alarms diminished their quality of life.
These days, car alarms go off so often that people don't even go to their windows anymore to check.
Since newer vehicles are equipped with immobilization devices, there's really no need to install a car alarm.
Especially since no one takes them seriously anymore.
In fact, car alarms are used more often to locate one's car in a crowded mall parking lot than to deter a potential thief.
According to a report by Transportation Alternatives, car alarms do so little to prevent theft that many insurance companies are no longer offering a discount to those who install these devices.
Studies have also shown that repeated exposure to noise pollution caused by car alarms decreases worker productivity causes property values to do down and diminishes a child's scholastic aptitude.
If car alarms don't work and only serve as an annoyance, it stands to reason that they shouldn't be necessary and in fact, shouldn't be allowed.
If you feel they're a nuisance and would like to do something about them, contact your police department and inquire as to where you should register your complaint.
If enough people take a stand against car alarms, they may succeed in silencing them for good.