Gardaí in Cork are warning people to be extra vigilant when it comes to parking their cars either at home or in car parks.
The warning comes as a number of people in the North Cork area had catalytic converters stolen from their vehicles last weekend.
The cars being targeted are older models of the Toyota Yaris.
Speaking to JohnPaul McNamara on C103’s Cork Today, Sergeant John Kelly of Fermoy Garda Station said that the theft of catalytic converters from cars was “back in a big way”.
He said there was an attempted theft made in Nad on July 27 where the occupants of a blue Skoda was seen acting suspiciously in the area.
The areas targeted in recent weeks were Milford, Churchtown, Effin South, and Ballyclogh.
Sgt Kelly said that in each case, it was an older model of Toyota Yaris that was targeted.
He said that some of the catalytic converters could cost up to €700 to replace, which in many cases could be more than the price of the car it is stolen from.
hen you consider that the replacement of a catalytic converter could be €600 or €700, that could be more than the price of what the car is worth.
He said that it is the metal used within these converters that thieves are interested in
“It’s the precious metals contained within the catalytic converter that they target, the price of which has gone through the roof in the last 12 months,” he said.
Sgt Kelly said that it is likely that the thieves plan ahead and know what cars to target.
“It’s quite likely that there is a bit of homework done in advance, that they already know the locations of the cars, and then on a particular night come and maybe do two or three in the same general area,” he said.
He advised owners of this type of vehicle to ensure that it is safe as possible, and also to reverse into their driveway.
He also advised people to make neighbours or friends living in the same area aware that their car may be a target.