A Tulsa bus repair shop said a new product helps prevent thieves from stealing catalytic converters.
A customer at National Bus Sales had a converter stolen twice in two months. That's when the parts director at the bus company discovered the "Cat Clamp.”
Eric Anderson with National Bus Sales said the customer spent more than $6,000 in repairs after the two thefts.
"I've been in the automotive business for 33 years. This is by far the worst I've seen it,” said Anderson, talking about the rise in catalytic converter theft.
Anderson said they get at least one call a week from someone who’s had their catalytic converter stolen. He said one Tulsa business had 35 converters stolen off their delivery trucks in just one weekend.
“People are just so brazen now,” said Anderson. “It is happening at night, every week. I promise you every night, someone loses a converter."
After a customer had a catalytic converter stolen twice in two months, they asked if there was anything that would help. That's when Anderson and his crew came across the Cat Clamp.
"You put it on the converter and it actually ties it into the frame, of the body of the vehicle making it much more difficult to steal,” said Anderson.
Anderson said they've already replaced more than 15 catalytic converters on busses this year and said the Cat Clamp would have been nice to know about earlier.
"It is mindboggling. We could have easily installed ten to fifteen of those Cat Clamps this year, if I had known about the product at that time,” said Anderson. “These are just individuals coming in with single busses, churches, schools. Now we've been able to, if we have a customer come in, offer that service that we can get a clamp for this that should help in keeping people from stealing it."
Anderson said the Cat Clamp costs around $400. To add to the problem of all these catalytic converters being stolen, Anderson said getting replacement parts is taking up to 45 days at times.