A loud start...and the sound of a raw exhaust isn't how most cars are supposed to sound. The reason is that their catalytic converters were stolen. And police say it's a problem that's not going away.
“We'll have to fix them...they'll all have to be fixed,” says Veldy Massey of Adanta Behavioral Health in Somerset..where the converters were cut off three vans.
“Actually one of the pieces of the pipe was laying down there.....one of the co-workers had went down to get one of the vans....and it was extra loud,.” Massey says of the start up of the vans.
The loud sound is because the converter's purpose is to cut down on toxic emissions from the exhaust. But thieves cut them off cars because they can sell them for the valuable metals inside.
Investigators have their hands full because of a recent rash of converts thefts. New's Garage had 7 stolen from cars parked outside the auto repair shop near downtown Somerset.
Police say it only takes a few minutes to cut the converters off. Criminals then sell them to scrap metal dealers. River Metals near Somerset doesn't accept the converters but police say other scrap dealers aren't so easy to work with. And often the victims, like Adanta, are stuck with an expensive repair bill.
“We'll have to fix it in and fix it. More headache, more cost, more money, more overhead. It doesn't help matters, no.”