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Officials Warn About Catalytic Converter Thefts

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Angels Camp, CA — Local officials are warning about an increase in thefts of catalytic converters from parked vehicles.

The device found underneath cars is sometimes targeted by thieves because they have small amounts of valuable metals. The devices are required on all vehicles to reduce the amount of toxic pollutants.

The Angels Camp Police Department has put out a warning, stating, “Picture this: You walk out to your vehicle after a long day at work. You are tired and want to go home. You get in your car, start the engine, and it makes a loud ROOOOOOAR! Suddenly your vehicle sounds like it has transformed into a race car. Unfortunately, you may be the latest victim of catalytic converter theft, and it is COSTLY to replace.”

There has been an increase in thefts nationally, including two cases within the city of Angels Camp in recent weeks.

The PD has put out the following tips:

• In public parking lots, park in well-lit areas near building entrances or busy access roads when possible.

• When you are at home, park in your garage if you have one. Remember to close the garage door.

• Try not to leave your vehicle unattended for long periods of time.

• Thieves tend to target hybrid vehicles, pickups, and SUVS. If you own one of these vehicles, be extra cautious of where you leave your vehicle unattended.

• Consider contacting your mechanic about ways your catalytic converter can be protected, such as the installation of an after-market device or having the catalytic converter welded in place.

• Activate your vehicle’s security alarm if it is equipped with one.

The goal is to make your vehicle as unattractive a target as possible for catalytic converter theft. The more inconvenient it is for a thief to steal your catalytic converter, the more likely it is that they will move on to an easier target.