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How thefts of catalytic converters in the Ozarks impact your insurance

Catalytic converter theft is an on-going issue in the Ozarks. Repair for this crime can cost owners thousands. Insurance agencies explain how this affects insurance.
Published: Jul. 12, 2021 at 5:05 PM CDT
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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) - Catalytic converter theft is a common issue happening in the Ozarks.

Springfield’s Rick’s Automotive says they have seen 40-50 victims within the last three to four months just at their shop.

“One case we had the thief stole a catalytic converter and a diesel particulate filter and did a lot of damage underneath their car. That particular repair bill because they did so much damage was upwards of around $13,000,” said Micah Blake with Rick’s automotive.

Rick’s Automotive shared a device called a “cat clamp” that helps protect against criminals.

“A couple of our fleets have been using the cat clamp device and it is a kind of a cable type mechanism that goes over the catalytic converter that attaches to part of the frame of the vehicle as well. It makes it harder for people to steal your converter,” said Blake.

Insurors of the Ozarks shared with KY3 how being victim to catalytic converter theft affects your insurance.

“If you have a comprehensive claim it is not something that negatively affects your rate moving forward because they’re the claims that are paid on or comprehensive are damaged that you don’t really have control over,” said insurance agent Bryant Young.

Young explained that as long as you have a comprehensive coverage plan you should be safe if this unfortunate event were to happen.

“Hail, vandalism, theft, a deer jumping out in front of you, these are all things that are paid by a comprehensive claim. There is not really a negative effect because you have no way of controlling somebody getting under your vehicle and trying to steal the catalytic converter,” said Young.

Young recommends you call your insurance company if this happens to you or a loved one.

“For people that are concerned that this could happen to them, I would recommend a conversation with your insurance agent and make sure that you have the correct coverage that will pay for something like this,” said Young.

According to the Springfield Police Department, it is so common because of the ease of removing the converter and the value of the various metals found within hold. The police department recommends multiple tips to avoid being a victim including: defensive parking, park security lighting, spreading awareness, identifying etching, and reporting to police. All of these tips are according to the Springfield Police department and more can be found here.

Furthermore, according to the Springfield Police Department the type of car you own can also make you more likely a victim of theft.

“Based on theft reports reviewed by detectives, it would appear the more commonly targeted vehicles in our area would include various models of the Ford pick-up along with smaller vehicles such as the Chevrolet Cavalier, Honda Element, and the Toyota Prius,” said the Springfield Police Department.

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