(KERO) — As gas prices hover at record levels thieves are trying new ways to steal gas and that includes targeting your car and gas stations.
One growing trend involves criminals drilling into your gas tank and then draining it. Replacing your gas tank could set you back $1,000 or more.
In Long Beach, police surrounded three vehicles at a gas station recently where suspects were caught in the act of trying to steal gasoline from an underground tank. Police say one person was taken into custody.
In another case, a suspect paid for $20 worth of gas but was able to physically damage the pump so it wouldn't shut off or alert the cashier.
"We are hearing about more and more reports of gas thefts happening not only in Southern California but also across the country," said Doug Shupe of the auto Club of Southern California.
The Autoclub of Southern California says a few ways to keep your vehicle safe including parking in a garage if you have one. And if you're parking in public look for fenced-in areas.