WARNING: Catalytic converter thefts on the rise, according to HPD

Crime

HOUSTON (CW39) The Houston Police Department is warning residents to be aware of an increase in catalytic converter thefts across the Bayou City. City officials have released some tips to help you avoid becoming a victim to catalytic converter theft.


Thefts of the converters in the city so far in 2021 have increased by 300% compared to the same time period last year, according to officials. The converters contain precious metals and can be stolen from a vehicle in less than two minutes.


Investigators say, while any vehicle with a catalytic converter is susceptible, there are six models of vehicles most often targeted:
Toyota Tundra
Toyota Prius
Toyota Tacoma
Ford F-250
Honda Element & CRV


Auto Theft Division Sergeant Tracy Hicks says there is no favored time for the thieves to target the vehicles. “Thefts are happening day and night, but most seem to happen during the day in crowded parking lots with lots of noise to cover up the noise of removal of the converters,” said Sergeant Hicks.

Victims are shocked when told the cost of replacing a stolen converter. Repairs can cost anywhere from $3,000 to $10,000 for some vehicles, some of which have as many as four catalytic converters. Due to the rise in converter thefts across the country, back order on these parts can be more than three months, according to investigators.

Residents are urged to follow some prevention tips to help lessen chances of becoming the next in a long line of property crime victims:

  • Park in well lighted areas
  • Use your garage
  • Etching your VIN or license plate into your converters
  • Bright high temp paint (lets police know converter has been marked)
  • Install a skid plate or large cover to the bottom of your vehicle
  • Upgrade car alarms to activate when the vehicle is jacked up on one side
  • Aftermarket products like straps or wire cages that make it much more difficult for your converter to be cut off
  • Sergeant Hicks says vehicle owners can follow three steps to protect themselves: Etch it, Paint it Cover it.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Popular

LATEST VIDEO

Monitoring Gulf Low - Adam Krueger

Upper 90's, will feel like triple digits - Adam Krueger

Heat Wave In Cities Across the Country - Adam Krueger

Forecast Heat Index - Adam Krueger

Lifetime Fitness Cafe with Omar

CW39 SHARRON MELTON INTERVIEW HISD DR. GRENITA LATHAN

Summers have been getting warmer in Houston

Grill Giveaway with Texas Star Grill Shop

Coming up... National Heat Wave, Grilling Contest - Star Harvey

"Walker" CW39 Houston Interview with Jared P

Biden's European Visit, new record warm low temp

Air Force Base lifts lockdown, Weather outlook - Sharron Melton, Star Harvey

Weekend Weather Forecast - Adam Krueger

TX govt. faces fed lawsuit, TX Tech system growing - Sharron Melton

Heat Pattern, Cicada Invasion, Bats Return - Adam Krueger, Hannah Trippett

National Heat Advisories - Star Harvey

Impacts of an Urban Heat Island - Carrigan Chauvin

Annular Solar Eclipse - Sharron Melton

Impacts of an "Urban Heat Island" - Carrigan Chauvin

103° Forecast Heat Index - Adam Krueger

CRIME

More Crime

Local Headlines

More Local

ZIP RECRUITER

Don't Miss