Over recent weeks Greater Manchester Police have noticed an increase in the theft of Catalytic Converters in the Saddleworth North area. Consider the following crime prevention tips to prevent yourself becoming a victim.
How to prevent Thefts of Catalytic Converters
Catalytic converter or Cat theft is increasing; reports say it has increased by over 400% in the last few years. The problem is increasing as valuable precious metals that make up catalytic converters, metals such as platinum, palladium, rhodium and gold have increased in value. Thieves simply cut the catalytic converter from the exhaust pipe of a parked car and sell them on to scrap dealers.
Catalytic converters are also relatively easy to steal, very few vehicle owners are aware of this crime prevention problem and so don’t take crime prevention precautions. There are a number of crime prevention tactics you can consider to try and reduce the risk of becoming the next victim of CAT theft.
- The first step to preventing being a victim of this crime is understanding the issue. Research has identified that taller vehicles, including 4x4s and vans may be more vulnerable as their catalytic converters (CATs) are more accessible. These vehicles often have larger engines and larger CAT’s also.
- When away from your home try and park in well-lit busy areas. This may make your vehicle a less attractive target for a criminal as there is greater chance of them being seen and disturbed.
- Catalytic converter thieves will often target an area over a period of time. Be aware of local media to see if there are reports in your locality.
- If you can park your vehicle in a garage. This is an extra level of security for a thief to beat if they want to steal your catalytic converter.
- CAT thieves don’t want to be seen. Effective security lighting could help put off a CAT thief.
- Fit a catalytic converter anti-theft device such as the Armacat.. The Armacat is fitted to the catalytic converter using stainless steel collars, high strength dome head bolts and temper proof shear nuts.
An alternative could be the the Catloc, this is slightly cheaper in price. The manufacturers claim that the Catloc can be fitted to 99% of at risk vehicles.
- Consider installing CCTV devices. Modern CCTV has night vision capabilities and can be viewed on smartphones. A system like this will be a major deterrent to a criminal and could cost less than replacing a CAT.
- The metal shell of your CAT can be marked. If it is removed and the Police seize stolen CATs this may make it easier to return to you as stolen property.
- Be aware and encourage awareness amongst your community. If you see people working under vehicles be aware they may be attacking the CAT or stealing fuel
- If you operate a small fleet, consider obstructing access to vehicles with high ground clearance by parking lower vehicles close by.