SAN DIEGO, Calif. — Catalytic converter thieves have continued to siege communities across California, according to new data released by State Farm.

While analyzing claims of theft nationwide, State Farm found California at the top of the list with a whopping 10,577 catalytic converter thefts reported between July 2021 and June 2022. In comparison to other states, California has significantly more of these occurrences than the rest of the nation.

Top ten states of converter theft:

#1 California – 10577

#2 Texas – 5867

#3 Illinois – 3299

#4 Washington – 2390

#5 Minnesota – 1976

#6 Oregon – 1643

#7 Ohio – 1494

#8 Pennsylvania – 1363

#9 Arizona – 1155

#10 Colorado – 1154

State Farm said thefts of auto parts started to skyrocket in several states during the COVID-19 pandemic, with catalytic converter being a go-to for car part poachers.

Between July 2021 and June of 2022, catalytic converter thefts increased by almost 109% nationwide, according to State Farm data.

Why do thieves want catalytic converters?

Catalytic converters are part of the exhaust system, said State Farm, and help to reduce the contaminants emitted by it. There are rare metals inside of these auto parts, which include platinum, palladium or rhodium. These metals can be worth hundreds to thousands of dollars, according to the insurance provider.

How do you reduce the risk of this part being stolen?

State Farm has suggested automobile owners park vehicles inside garages or well lit areas if possible. They also recommended drivers install motion sensor security lights in driveways to lessen the chance of catalytic converter theft.

Over $15 million has been paid in insurance claims during the first half of 2020, according to State Farm records.