catalytic converter theft

As reports of catalytic converter thefts continue to rise, the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles is the latest to issue a warning about the problem. The New York DMV has reportedly partnered with other entities, including the Niagara Frontier Automobile Dealers Association (NFADA) and the National Insurance Crime Bureau, to develop ways to combat the issue and reduce the frequency of thefts.

According to New York DMV commissioner Mark Schroeder, “New car dealers have been hit particularly hard by these thefts. In addition to the cost to replace the stolen parts, these thefts often result in thousands of dollars in additional damage to the vehicle, which means a dealer has to wait to sell the vehicle, or a new car buyer has to wait significantly longer to receive their vehicle.” 

NFADA’s president, Paul Stasiak, said, “Automobile dealers realize catalytic converter theft is one of the fastest-growing crimes across the nation” and added that “prevention, awareness, and education are needed because this crime impacts every vehicle owner.”

The New York DMV and its partners are reportedly working on a new initiative that would assist law enforcement in tracking stolen catalytic converters. Dealerships would be provided with so-called “etching kits,” which would allow them to carve serial numbers into the catalytic converters on their vehicles. These could subsequently be traced by law enforcement if they were stolen. 

Catalytic converter theft has exponentially increased, undoubtedly due in part to the fact that the prices of the metals used to build them have drastically risen throughout the past year, and the New York DMV indicated that thieves could get between $200 and $500 for each one they sell.

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