St. Albert RCMP warn of spike in catalytic converter thefts – Edmonton Journal

St. Albert RCMP warn of spike in catalytic converter thefts - Edmonton Journal
This expensive part is being stolen from vehicles in St. Albert, police say
After a sharp rise in the number of reported catalytic converter thefts in St. Albert in September, RCMP warned vehicle owners to be careful where they park.

The car part is being stolen more often, especially from vehicles left parked for a few hours or overnight in shopping mall or store parking lots, in front of closed businesses and in industrial areas, according to the RCMP.

In August, there was one catalytic converter theft, but RCMP received 11 reports of catalytic converter thefts in September. So far, two catalytic converters have been stolen from St. Albert vehicles and there has been one attempted theft.

On the Thanksgiving weekend, a grey 2005 Honda CRV left in a staff parking lot at the Sturgeon Community Hospital had the catalytic converter cut out and stolen.

Catalytic converters can easily be removed by sliding under the vehicle and sawing through the exhaust pipes. This means that trucks, vans and SUVs are more at risk for catalytic converter thefts as they are easier to crawl under.

Catalytic converters contain expensive metals that criminals are selling for a profit. Replacing a stolen catalytic converter can cost a vehicle owner up to $2,000.

RCMP released this surveillance photo of a theft and warned of a rise in stolen catalytic converters in St. Albert. Supplied.

To prevent catalytic converter thefts, RCMP said owners should park in well-lit areas or in a garage when possible, park close to building entrances, or park close to roads so there is more people passing by your vehicle that could see when something is wrong.

If you have information about this crime and would like to remain anonymous, contact Crime Stoppers by phone at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477), online at p3tips.com, or with the P3 Tips app.

They dont look like much, but catalytic converters are often made of expensive metals like platinum, which likely explains why theft of the car part is on the rise.

EDMONTON – Police have issued a warning to St. Albert residents after a rise of thefts of catalytic converters.

According to RCMP, in September they received 11 complaints of thefts of catalytic converters from parked vehicles, and two so far in October. The second happened over Thanksgiving weekend, to a vehicle parked at the Sturgeon Community Hospital.

Police say thieves steal the converters to sell the parts for profit, but it can end up costing drivers up to $2,000 to repair per vehicle.

Trucks and SUVs are more at risk for catalytic converter theft because the thief has to slide under the vehicle and saw through the piping.

To minimize the risk of catalytic converter theft, park vehicles in a well-lit area or in a garage, park close to entrances or high traffic areas where someone might notice a thief, and report suspicious activity around parked vehicles to police.

Anyone with information about the thefts is asked to call St. Albert RCMP or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477. 

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