Dozens of catalytic converters stolen out of commercial vehicles in Lakewood Industrial Park

Catalytic converter thefts are skyrocketing nationwide. Dozens were recently swiped out of commercial vehicles in the Lakewood Industrial Park.

News 12 Staff

Jul 11, 2022, 4:08 PM

Updated 703 days ago

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Catalytic converter thefts are skyrocketing nationwide. Dozens were recently swiped out of commercial vehicles in the Lakewood Industrial Park. 
Thieves removed at least 50 of the catalytic converters from vehicles over the past few weeks, leaving businesses with an expensive repair bill. 
Thefts were reported to police in June, over the July 4 holiday and again this past weekend. Bimbo Bakeries, Alpine Air Heating and Cooling and others all fell victim to the thieves.
A representative from the HVAC company says his truck is still disabled because they don't have the parts in stock to fix it. It can cost upward of $3,000 per truck to get a replacement part.
So, why do thieves want your catalytic converters? They contain valuable metals, such as platinum. According to the National Insurance Crime Bureau, 3,400 parts were stolen in 2019. The number jumped to more than 50,000 in 2021.
There are federal and state bills introduced to help cut back on the thefts. A federal bill would require a VIN stamped on all converters in new vehicles. On the state level, Assemblywoman Beth Sawyer's bill would increase penalties for anyone caught stealing and would require proof of ownership prior to reselling a converter. 


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