Staffordshire Police is issuing advice to motorists and business owners after several areas of the county have seen an increase in the number of catalytic converters that have been stolen from vehicles.
Thieves target catalytic converters as they contain tiny amounts of precious metals which makes them so valuable and the price of these metals has increased in recent years. Commercial premises which house a number of vans are particularly vulnerable.
Vehicles should be parked in highly visible, well-lit areas. Off-road parking areas or secure compounds with strong perimeter fencing, warning signs and security lighting should be used wherever possible.
A monitored surveillance system can also be an effective deterrent and crime prevention of this kind can save on costly repair bills and minimise disruption to business.
Marking a converter with a unique reference will help police identify the owner should it be stolen, so always make sure that property is marked. Purpose made commercial property marking products are available which will withstand high temperatures reached on the surface of a converter.