North end of Niagara Falls being targeted for car part thefts


Published March 15, 2023 at 11:50 am

Hyundai cars or sport utility vehicles, in particular, are being targeted in catalytic converter thefts in north Niagara Falls.

Niagara Police are cautioning that the north end of Niagara Falls is being targeted for catalytic converter thefts, particularly from Hyundai cars or sport utility vehicles.

Saying there has been a spike in the thefts, the police added that since early February, suspects have targeted over 21 parked trucks and cars.

The average catalytic converter is worth between $800 and $1,200, depending on the vehicle’s make and model.

A catalytic converter is an exhaust emission control device that helps neutralize toxic gases and pollutants.

Thieves have been active in the residential apartment building parking lots mostly north of Thorold Stone Road, as well as commercial parking lots in the Montrose Rd, McLeod Rd, Pin Oak Dr. and Canadian Dr. area.

Police say thieves are using battery-operated handheld power tools such as grinders and reciprocating saws to cut the catalytic converters off the bottom of the cars and trucks.

Ten of the 21 incidents have involved a Hyundai car or sport utility vehicle with the stolen catalytic converters then being sold for the metals they contain.

Anyone with information about these thefts is asked to contact 2 District Niagara Falls detectives by calling 905-688-4111, option 3, extension 1009219.

Niagara Police offered up these prevention tips for stolen catalytic converters:

  • Lighting – Motion lighting or improved lighting where automobiles are kept can act as a deterrent.
  • Fences – Fences around car lots that either enclose the area or funnel people to a central area can help deter and identify suspects.  The integrity of fences should be checked on a regular basis and repaired if found damaged.
  • Garages – Where possible the use of a secure garage will limit thieves from accessing the automobiles.
  • Neighbours – Speak to your neighbours to alert them to your concerns.  Their awareness to the issue may help them identify and report suspicious behavior.
  • Cameras – The use of quality cameras can help identify suspects in the event of a crime.  Cameras can also be a deterrent. Trail cameras can be effective moderately priced option.
  • Security Personnel / Dogs – The overt regular presence of security personnel / dogs will cause thieves to think twice about a possible encounter.
  • Patrols – If you are a business owner with a fleet of automobiles frequently patrolling the property will help identify anything suspicious.
  • Metal recycling businesses – As required keep proper records and report suspicious activity.
  • Strange Noises and Sparks – When a thief uses a power tool to cut the catalytic converter off a vehicle it will make loud noises and create sparks.
  • Park – Park in high traffic areas where frequent foot and vehicle traffic may act as a deterrent.
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