The Crime Prevention Website

Back on 10 January this year the Hertfordshire Mercury (on line) ran a story about Hertfordshire Constabulary asking drivers and residents to be vigilant after a spike in thefts of spare wheels and catalytic converters from vehicles in the county

Inspector Paul Lawrence, from the crime reduction unit, said: “There’s been a rise in the theft of catalytic converters in recent weeks, particularly from commercial diesel vans, because the units are easier to remove. We have also seen a rise in the theft of spare wheels, which are accessible from underneath on some vehicles.”

Catalytic converters (CCs) are stolen for their scrap value because they contain platinum, rhodium and palladium, which are elements of high cost and in high demand.  If your vehicle has a high ground clearance consider having the converter chemically engraved with a proprietary marking and registration system as described on this website in Property identification - marking, tagging and tracking, Standards for property marking products and services  See also the large section on Motor vehicle security, which has lots more useful guidance.

Hertfordshire Constabulary have asked people to report any suspicious activity around vehicles that are left parked in public areas by calling 999.  The three nines are being asked for because of the speed at which both wheels and CCs are stolen – within 3 minutes.

Inspector Lawrence also said that the police are working with scrap dealers across the county to ensure that any stolen items come to their attention immediately

Police and crime commissioner David Lloyd said: “While most types of crime have been becoming less frequent over the last year – metal theft is still a concern for me and something I want to see tackled head-on. Herts Constabulary is working in partnership with scrap merchants, trading standards and other police forces to make it difficult for stolen scrap metal to be sold on.”

Hertfordshire Constabulary’s news pages have followed up this story with some further information about an offer from a local garage to mark CCs free of charge for a limited period.

Welham Green Service Station Dellsome Lane Welham Green Hatfield AL9 7NF, telephone: 01707 267100, has very kindly offered to mark catalytic converters fitted to diesel-engined, light commercial vehicles with a gross vehicle mass of up to 3.5 tonnes. This free offer is running from 28 January for two weeks.

Anyone interested should call the garage in advance to arrange an appointment; the marking only takes about 10 minutes.

How good is that!

Related websites: Hertfordshire Mercury

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