AMHERST, Mass. (WWLP) – Amherst Police have been receiving numerous reports that catalytic converters are being stolen in the overnight hours.

“In 2022, there have been 17 catalytic converter thefts reported to the Amherst Police Department that occurred in the Town of Amherst,” said Detective Sergeant Jamie Reardon. “A total of 15 of the vehicles have been Toyota Prius, 1 has been a Ford Van, and 1 has been an Isuzu box truck.”

The International Association of Auto Theft Investigators offers the following advice to protect your vehicle:

  • Engraving, marking, or catalytic safe label solution: It is recommended that a number like a VIN or at least the last 8 of the VIN or license plate number is engraved. Most hardware stores sell engravers for $20.00. However, etching must be done carefully to avoid damage.
  • Make your catalytic converter stand out: Your catalytic converter can be sprayed with a bright color to make a visible deterrent. The spray paint should be with a high temperature between 1300-2000 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Deter theft from the start: Some other methods are using a secured parking area, installing a bright motion sensor light, installing an anti-theft device, locking the vehicle at all times, and setting the alarm on your vehicle.

According to Amherst Police, to recognize whether or not yours has been stolen, you may hear a loud roaring noise that wasn’t there before. If you are a victim of this type of incident or to report any suspicious activity, you are asked to call Amherst Police at 413-259-3000.