Newham police warn of increased thefts of catalytic converters

Thefts of catalytic converters from cars in the Beckton area are on the up, police warn.

And they admit such thefts have become a real problem for many vehicle owners in the uk because of the four precious metals that are used to manufacture them.

These are gold, platinum, palladium and Rhodium. Each stolen catalytic converter can be sold to a scrap metal dealer from between �50 and �200 depending on the size.

Thefts are a fast growing problem due the exposed nature of the catalytic converter being positioned under a vehicle. Any would-be thief can easily crawl underneath, armed with a cheap and easy to obtain battery operated metal saw, to cut through the exhaust pipe on either side of the equipment and be gone in under 30 seconds.

Police say the likely cost of a replacement is close to a �1,000 and in many cases much more not to mention the time hassle and frustration faced for the work.

The best way to effectively deter the thieves from stealing your catalytic converter, say police, is to fit an anti-theft device, which can be found on the internet or through a motor vehicle accessory shop

To reduce the risk of theft of your vehicle they advise owners to:

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*Garage your car or van whenever possible

*Park in well-lit busy areas

*Be aware of people looking under cars

*If the car is high risk consider marking the metal shell of the converter with a unique mark, so that if it is removed by thieves it will be easier to trace back to your vehicle

*Fit a catalytic converter clamp or security cage