Guelph police say catalytic converters continue to be a hot commodity for thieves after several were stolen from businesses around town over the weekend.
The service began to receive complaints on Monday morning from workplaces that the exhaust components were missing from work vehicles.
Seven catalytic converters were stolen from three businesses near York Road and Watson Parkway, while three businesses on Regal Road reported four missing, police said.
There have been about 40 such thefts just in Guelph since Christmas.
The problem is not limited to the Royal City either as the thieves are targeting valuable metals, palladium and rhodium, found in the auto parts that can be sold to scrap metal yards.
Guelph police said services across North America have reported a steep increase in thefts this year as the value of the metals soar.
According to Macrotrends, the price of palladium went from about US$2,900 as of Monday, up from about US$200 an ounce 12 years ago. By comparison, the price of gold rose to just US$1,780 from approximately $1,100 an ounce in the same period.
The website money metals says Rhodium is now valued at more than UD$28,200 an ounce, up from about US$1,100 an ounce in early 2009.
Police are urging residents to report any suspicious people or vehicles, particularly in remote areas where vehicles might be left overnight.
Vehicle owners should be parking in a garage or in well-lit, highly visible areas, police said.
— With files from Global News’ Nick Logan