Reported Catalytic Converter Thefts at PPHS skyrockets


Schematic diagram of Catalytic Converter from Universal Technical Institute


Many people here at PPHS drive to and from school every day, and the PPHS buses take people to and from Howe High School (Our sports field). All is well, except for a big problem –-theft. Many people are scared of their cars getting broken into due to the high crime rate in the surrounding neighborhood. But there is another theft-related problem: catalytic converter theft.
A catalytic converter is a part of an exhaust system that controls emissions and somewhat cleans the air coming from the exhaust. Without them, the emissions coming from your car will be ninety percent more dangerous than they usually are. Although a car can run without one, it hurts the performance of a car and has been a legal requirement in every motor vehicle since 1975. Catalytic converters are a big target for many thieves and are one of the most commonly stolen car parts due to their value. Their value is due to the rare minerals in them, such as; gold, platinum, and more. Which then get sold for money. They are often expensive to replace, and some insurance companies would not cover them. Catalytic converter theft has become a big problem in the US, especially in poorer neighborhoods, like Englewood, where PPHS resides.
The theft of this component has become a significant problem on campus, with many thefts costing well over; $12,000 combined with it reported by staff and students alike. Personal vehicles are the least of our concerns. Our school faculty have reported that catalytic converters have been stolen from both of our buses eight times, costing the school over; $5000 in replacement costs. These problems have left many students worrying about the risks of driving to school. “ “I am worried that when I park my car at school, something could happen and then have to spend all of my money if I want to keep using it,” says Dorian Evans, a senior at PPHS, who drives a gray 2001 BMW 530i . Imagine if you were about to drive home after school, but suddenly you find out that someone stole a valuable part of your car, and now you have to spend a four-figure sum replacing the part.
How seemingly worrying many people feel, there are many things we can do to help prevent the theft of these components. Some places put a tag on your converter with a label, showing buyers if the converter sold to them was a stolen part. Though it doesn’t prevent it from being stolen, It does prevent it from being sold. But the most effective way to deter thieves. However, by installing a cage that surrounds the converter. It costs a lot and can not guarantee prevention, but it has shown to be very effective. If you worry about your catalytic converter getting stolen, it will make it worthwhile.
There are many ways to prevent the outburst of catalytic converter theft within the PPHS community, and if everyone can take advantage of these ways, we can eliminate this problem.