Calgary police partner with Kal Tire to engrave catalytic converters

Click to play video: 'Calgary police teams up with Kal Tire to prevent catalytic converter theft'
Calgary police teams up with Kal Tire to prevent catalytic converter theft
WATCH: Calgary police are teaming up with Kal Tire in an attempt to curb catalytic converter thefts. Elissa Carpenter reports. – Jan 11, 2023

The Calgary Police Service is partnering with Kal Tire to try and curb catalytic converter thefts in the city.

Vehicle owners will be able to have their vehicle identification number (VIN) engraved onto their catalytic converter starting Wednesday, according to a CPS news release.

If a catalytic converter is stolen, the marking will allow the part to be tracked as stolen property through the Canadian Police Information Centre (CPIC) database, says CPS.

Scrap metal recycling businesses and private buyers can identify potentially stolen catalytic converters if they are engraved and if the seller cannot produce proof of ownership. They will need to report it to the police, CPS said.

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This comes after CPS received 3,174 reports of stolen catalytic converters between January and November last year. This is a 103 per cent increase from 2021, when police saw a reported 1,560 catalytic converter thefts.

Around 205 and 300 catalytic converter thefts were reported in 2019 and 2020, respectively.

Click to play video: 'Calgary city councillors looking at options to crack down on catalytic converter thefts'
Calgary city councillors looking at options to crack down on catalytic converter thefts

Police said catalytic converters are often stolen because of the price of precious metals used to make them. They are also easy to steal, and CPS said they’ve received reports of thefts happening in broad daylight.

However, these thefts are largely underreported, according to CPS.

“We are aware that a large number of catalytic converter thefts are not being reported as people worry they are tying up police resources, or that it will be too difficult for the suspect to be located and held accountable,” Const. Brent Podesky said in a statement.

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“It’s important for citizens to know that each report, no matter how small, is taken seriously and helps us develop prevention initiatives, such as the engraving program with Kal Tire.”

Those who want to have their catalytic converter engraved can book an appointment at any Kal Tire across Calgary from Wednesday to the end of March. It will cost $40 per appointment and will take approximately an hour, CPS said.

It will also include a free visual tire and brake inspection, Wednesday’s news release said.

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