Cops show Mississauga, Brampton residents how to protect valuable car part from crooks
Published February 21, 2023 at 10:35 am
At the sessions, to be held March 4 and March 25 at the City of Mississauga transportation and works facility (3185 Mavis Rd.) from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Peel Regional Police will highlight new theft-deterrent techniques specific to catalytic converters.
Catalytic converters are part of a vehicle’s exhaust system that reduces polluting emissions. Thieves target the parts because they’re made of precious metals like palladium, platinum and rhodium, and can be turned into big money–potentially millions of dollars–in a relatively short period of time.
One anti-theft technique being pushed by police is the etching of the vehicle’s licence plate marker into the catalytic converter so it’s traceable by cops, if found.
Those who attend either March session will have their licence plate markers etched free of charge onto the valuable car part.
Peel police and cops across Canada and the U.S. have seen a dramatic rise in thefts of catalytic converters in recent years.
Looking to make quick and good money, thieves have been more active in stealing the car part from vehicles across the region, Peel cops note.
Catalytic converters are relatively easy to remove from cars in about a minute. Additionally, they often lack serial numbers, making them difficult to trace once removed from the car.
Some of the precious metals are more valuable than gold, and their value has been increasing, reports from the U.S. indicate. Catalytic converters can cost more than $1,000 each on the black market, according to the U.S. Department of Justice, which busted a huge catalytic converter theft ring last November.
At the March sessions, police will also offer car owners additional tips on how to protect their vehicles from thieves including parking in well-lit areas and making sure your car alarm is working.