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The Spokane Police Department would like the community to be aware of an increase of catalytic converter thefts from vehicles in the city.
Spokane is experiencing a growth in catalytic converter thefts from vehicles. Thieves target catalytic converters because they contain precious metals, like platinum, palladium or rhodium that are valuable to metal dealers. Thieves typically use a saw or wrench to remove it, depending on whether the catalytic converter is bolted or welded in.
The recent spike in these thefts is due to rapidly rising prices of the precious metals contained in the converters.
WHAT CAN YOU DO TO PROTECT YOUR CAR'S CATALYTIC CONVERTER?
Consider these tips to help protect your car from catalytic converter theft:
- When possible, park in well-lit areas, close to building entrances and in fenced enclosures.
- If you have a garage at your house, park your car inside and keep the garage door shut.
- Have the catalytic converter welded (by a certified person/business) to your car's frame, which may make it harder to steal.
- Consider engraving your vehicle identification number (VIN) on the catalytic converter — this may help alert a scrap dealer that it was stolen and make it easier to identify the owner.
- Calibrate your car's alarm to set off when it detects vibration.
If you, a private vehicle owner, fleet manager or car dealership, have become a victim of catalytic converter theft please report the incident to Crime Check at (509) 456-2233. We would also like anyone that is contacted by persons buying (not from an auto parts store) or selling catalytic converters to call Crime Check to report that as well.
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