Auto Repair and Service

Dozens of legislation enforcement businesses, auto restore retailers a part of state program concentrating on catalytic converter thefts

MINNEAPOLIS – Greater than 100 native police departments and auto restore retailers within the Twin Cities and past are part of a state pilot program designed to discourage thefts of vehicles’ catalytic converters, which have elevated in the previous few years.

The initiative, run by the Minnesota Division of Commerce, presents free labels with serial numbers to Minnesotans who drive one of many 15 most focused vehicles.  Mechanics etch the distinctive marking, which has a quantity and a QR code, onto a catalytic converter with acid paint. It could then be registered and traced by legislation enforcement. 

Golden Valley Tire and Service was among the many first few retailers to affix this system, which has since grown to incorporate dozens extra legislation enforcement businesses and companies. Jim Kirchner, the assistant service supervisor, stated the labels have develop into more and more standard during the last a number of months.

“My prospects which have an particularly susceptible car that the state’s taken care of, it delights them to know they’ll get a little bit peace of thoughts free of charge,” Kirchner stated.

However curiosity expanded past those who certified for the free state program, so the store ordered a few of its personal from CatGuard – the identical firm the state makes use of – for individuals to buy and set up, no matter what automobile they drive. Golden Valley Tire & Service sells them for beneath $100.

The Minnesota Legislature earmarked $400,000 for the pilot final 12 months. The legislation requires scrap steel sellers to make a report of components with any of those markings.



“If somebody had been to try to take your stolen converter to a scrap facility to get money for it, and so they had been to run the serial quantity, it will come again as a pink flag,” Kirchner stated.

St. Louis Park Police already disbursed its share of the state-funded serial quantity. However the division may have an occasion in a number of weeks the place vehicles can get particular paint stain. Lt. Mike Garland stated the serial numbers and different markings are a deterrent and the one actual method to monitor the components down as soon as they’re stolen.  

“So far as reuniting a converter with its proprietor and their car after it has been stolen, if it does not include some kind of distinctive marking or identifier, that is simply one thing that is gonna be unimaginable just about,” Garland stated.

Shakopee Police just lately introduced they joined the state program and are providing the labels these with susceptible vehicles. Chaska Police is having an occasion from 3 p.m. to five p.m. Tuesday and there will likely be 150 obtainable for any car, stated Chaska Officer Julie Janke. 

She famous two latest thefts of catalytic converters had been on a Jeep and Ford Escape – neither automobile is on the listing for the most-targeted vehicles. Janke stated the division first acquired 50 of the CatGuard stickers in Could and ran out of them in 25 minutes. 

“It is throughout,” Janke stated of the thefts. “It is simply loopy.”

Click on right here to see what cities are taking part.

Probably the most focused autos for stealing catalytic converters are:

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