The New York State Department of Motor Vehicles is warning New Yorkers of “skyrocketing” catalytic converter thefts throughout the state and have announced a new initiative to aid law enforcement track stolen catalytic converters to deter thefts.
“New car dealers have been hit particularly hard by these thefts. In addition to the cost to replace the stolen parts, these thefts often result in thousands of dollars in additional damage to the vehicle, which means a dealer has to wait to sell the vehicle or a new car buyer has to wait significantly longer to receive their vehicle,” said DMV Commissioner Mark J.F. Schroeder. “We are happy to help get etching kits into the hands of dealers to help them fight the scourge of catalytic converter thefts.”
Over the past three years, some areas of the state have seen increases up to 200 percent per year. One of the main targets has been new car dealerships. Criminals will enter dealer lots with hacksaws or other tools and cut the catalytic converters off vehicles.
In response, the DMV is working with regional auto dealers’ associations to distribute etching kits to dealers. Dealers or consumers who have questions about the etching kits should contact their local auto dealer association.