Featured Over 100 catalytic converters stolen from cars in recent weeks

Discussion in 'Prius, Hybrid, EV and Alt-Fuel News' started by PriusCamper, Jan 13, 2021.

  1. PriusCamper

    PriusCamper Senior Member

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    Though the glory days of Prius may be behind it, the Prius name keeps showing up in the headlines. This particular article is just a short distance north of the San Francisco Bay Area in California (aka: North Bay).

    "Tuesday morning’s chase was Sonoma County’s second high-speed police pursuit of suspected catalytic converter thieves in one week. The county has seen a remarkable spate of over 100 stolen catalytic converters in recent weeks — usually from Prius models. Petaluma police had received a report from a nearby neighborhood of vehicle tampering by two men in a small, dark vehicle, McGreevy said. When officers spotted that car and tried to stop it, the vehicle sped off at such a high speed — at least 90 mph, police said — that pursuit was quickly terminated. Moments later, the driver lost control of the car, careening across the oncoming lane and into that tree, 150 yards south of the St. Vincent de Paul Church. In the Honda, police found a reciprocating saw and at least two catalytic converters the men were suspected of cutting from cars." https://www.pressdemocrat.com/article/news/thieves-steal-over-100-catalytic-converters-from-sonoma-county-cars/
     
  2. El Dobro

    El Dobro A Member

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    Drive EV. (y)
     
  3. wjtracy

    wjtracy Senior Member

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    Actually yes it says you can design a near zero pollution car, but you need $1000 worth (few grams) of rare platinum, which the good news is highly recyclable, and the bad news is highly recyclable.

    Prius weaknesses: Of Mice and Men
     
  4. ILuvMyPriusToo

    ILuvMyPriusToo Senior Member

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    "the smashed Honda sedan that left those skid marks before the driver crashed into a stout sycamore at the southeast corner of Sixth and A streets on the west side of Petaluma. Moments earlier, ambulances had transported the car’s two unidentified occupants to Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital with injuries that appeared serious, but not life-threatening."

    Ah, well, at least these two might be off the streets for a while. :eek: But there are others. :mad:
     
  5. chuckiechan

    chuckiechan Junior Member

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    it is an epidemic in California and the state is not interested in doing anything about it. But then again, either are the manufacturers. They could spot weld.
     
  6. PriusCamper

    PriusCamper Senior Member

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    California legislators are hyper-active when it comes to legislation to solve just about any problem... Catch is people who own old gen2 Prius aren't going to be making big donations to legislators to do their bidding, so it's a poor people problem as well as an environmental problem. Both don't get much representation...

    But the main thing is getting emissions data from cheap aftermarket cats and showing there's no difference and then get legislation that allow after-market cats for theft victims. I suspect a good way to approach this would be to contact organizations who lobby for resources for crime victims.
     
  7. Elektroingenieur

    Elektroingenieur Senior Member

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    That’s just the problem: if the makers of the aftermarket parts had such data, they could submit it to the California Air Resources Board and get their parts approved, and no legislation would be needed.

    Has anyone asked a company such as Walker (Tenneco), which sells CARB-approved catalytic converters for other Toyota models, why they don’t offer a CARB-approved catalytic converter for Prius cars? Since they sell some for Prius cars registered in other U.S. states, I’d hope they have enough test results to meet the “reasonable basis” standard of EPA’s Tampering Enforcement Policy (PDF).

    Similar questions could be asked of CARB: can they explain why the aftermarket hasn’t filled this obvious need, especially if Toyota is reportedly unable to meet the demand? Is it just too expensive to run the test program for one model? Would an aftermarket manufacturer need technical data that Toyota doesn’t have to share, such as specifics of how the hybrid system keeps the catalytic converter warm enough to be effective without running the engine continuously? Is there a patent that’s not available to license, or for which the royalties would make an aftermarket product too costly to compete?

    It might well be possible to get a legislator interested in this problem, since it’s ongoing and affects many innocent people of modest means, but a solution would probably need CARB’s acquiesence: no politician wants to be on record as having voted against clean air.
     
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  8. hill

    hill High Fiber Member

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    a few spot welds can be removed with an angle grinder in short order. Rather than bring a Sawzall for the theft, they'd just switch to battery angle grinders. The sooner everybody goes to BEV's, the sooner the cat converter theft will end.

    .
     
  9. ozmatt

    ozmatt Active Member

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  10. Rmay635703

    Rmay635703 Senior Member

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    thieves remove your cat then sell it back to you for $1000+ due to failed legal requirements

    Aka They are worth more as OEM parts than materials in CARB states

    I’ve always been of the mindset that once a car hits some age beyond 10 years old requiring sometimes non-existent OEM parts for a repair/replacement is an excessive hardship which should drive a ban on any such legislative requirement.
     
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  11. PriusCamper

    PriusCamper Senior Member

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    The tweaker who steals it gets a $100... The precious metal dealer who extracts and refines the metals makes far more than that. Here's a quote that might not be perfect, but gives you a sense of it:

    "The platinum, palladium and rhodium are the three precious metals in the catalytic converters. The earlier converters had more precious metals where today most vehicles have multiple converters that have less metals in them. The second generation Prius has 6 grams of precious metals (about 2 grams each). Platinum is worth about $30 a gram, palladium is worth about $76 a gram and rhodium is about $370 a gram. So instead of destroying the earth like they have been, it's cheaper to remove it from catalytic converters that aren't used anymore (or stolen)."
     
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  12. ozmatt

    ozmatt Active Member

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    Yes thats why I don't cash them in, still have to wonder what the scrap value is because I get a few that are plugged up

    Posted via the PriusChat mobile app.
     
  13. Rmay635703

    Rmay635703 Senior Member

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    A blow torch and an air compressor will “fix” most any failed cat like new
     
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  14. ozmatt

    ozmatt Active Member

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    i have been watching videos on tube people soaking in this and that but always wondered how they might respond to a good roasting!

    is there a thread on this by any chance, i really need to do something about my daughters car it started whistling from the cat on hill climbs lol
     
  15. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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  16. vvillovv

    vvillovv Senior Member

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    one of the nastier prius quirks.

    steelin form 37693302 steeler
    still just a misdemeanor - at least its been elevated from CAT scam
     
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