Operation Feline helping drivers to protect their ‘cat’alytic converter
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Hertfordshire Constabulary is once again offering free catalytic converter marking, as part of Operation Feline, to help drivers protect their vehicles.
Thieves are continuing to target the catalytic converter units due to the valuable metals they contain and because they can be removed fairly quickly and easily from some vehicle models.
Operation Feline is helping drivers to protect their catalytic convertors by offering free security marking at garages across the county, as well as providing practical crime prevention advice.
Inspector Nicki Dean, from Hertfordshire Constabulary’s Crime Reduction Unit, said: “The precious metals in catalytic converters make them very attractive to thieves.
“We are reminding drivers that we are still working with local garages to offer free security marking. So far we have marked over 1000 vehicles since the launch of Operation Feline in 2020. We would also urge the public to follow our advice, remain vigilant and report incidents of suspected catalytic converter theft. If you witness a vehicle being raised using a car jack in a car park or residential area and there is a loud drilling or cutting sound coming from underneath the vehicle please call 999 immediately.”
In order to minimise the chance of becoming a victim we offer the following advice:
When using a garage is not possible, park close to fences, walls or a kerb with the exhaust being closest to the fence, wall or kerb to make theft difficult.
Consider fitting CCTV on your home or driveway, to help deter thieves.
Use PIR or LED security lighting to make your vehicle more visible and this can also act as a deterrent.
If your catalytic converter is bolted on, consider having the bolts welded to make removal difficult.
Fit protective coverings on catalytic converters, such as the Toyota manufactured CATLOC device, (these are made for Toyota Prius made between 2004 and 2009) as these can make it much more difficult for thieves.
Have your catalytic converter etched or forensically marked, and put stickers in the windscreen to say this has been done.
Look for car parks with a Secured Car Park sign which have recognised levels of security. If you have a garage at home, ensure you use it and lock it properly.
Noisy gravel on your drive can help deter a would-be thief, as they don't want to alert you to their approach.