Police in Hastings have had further reports of Catalytic converter thefts, the target vehicles mainly being Honda and Toyota Hybrids.
CCTV below (recorded back in 2021) shows just how quick and ruthless these criminals are.
Hastings police have issued the following advice:
Catalytic converters are devices fitted to vehicle exhausts to reduce the amount of dangerous gases emitted. They also contain valuable metals and can be removed in less than a minute.
By making our communities aware of the nature of the thefts and highlighting the ease in which this crime takes place, we can work together to prevent it.
Signs a catalytic converter theft is being committed
• A vehicle being raised using a car jack in a car park or residential area
• A loud drilling or cutting sound coming from underneath the vehicle
• If possible, park your vehicle in a garage overnight, or if you have a commercial vehicle, park it in a secure compound.
• Park in an area that’s well-lit and overlooked and try to park next to obstacles, fences or anything that can make it difficult for the vehicle to be jacked up.
• Try not to mount cars onto kerbs when parking, this only makes jacking up easier.
• Speak to a local garage about having the catalytic converter welded on the car.
• ‘Cage clamps’ which wrap around the catalytic converter and the bolts, making the theft more difficult.
• ‘Tilt sensors’ on your vehicle will trigger an alarm if the vehicle is tampered with.
• If possible, register your converter and mark it with a forensic marker, which will make it harder for thieves to dispose of.
The local Neighbourhood Policing team will be making every effort to speak with and advise those people with possible target vehicles on security measures and how to protect their vehicle. We have a number of Catalytic Converter Security Marking Kits with database registration at Hastings and Battle police Station, please pop in if you would like a kit.
• If the crime is happening now call 999 – if you are unsure, we’d rather hear about it and decide if a theft is occurring
• If it is safe to do so, take photos of suspects or the number plate of their car (do not approach suspects)
• If the crime has already happened, then you can report it to us online or call 101.