You Etch It. We Catch It. Program to curb catalytic converter thefts rolls out in Richmond


2024-02-28 08:04 PST

Richmond RCMP, in partnership with the City of Richmond and ICBC, is proud to launch the You Etch It. We Catch It program, aimed at combating catalytic converter theft and unlawful sales.

The new initiative, now available at participating Richmond automotive shops, invites vehicle owners to have the last eight digits of their VIN etched onto their catalytic converters during routine maintenance appointments at no extra cost. This etching serves as a crucial identifier to assist police in tracking stolen property and deterring potential thefts.

Photo of RCMP officer and mechanics standing in front of auto shop

Crime trend:

The Lower Mainland has seen a significant increase in catalytic converter thefts in recent years. According to ICBC, reported claims involving catalytic converters in the first seven months of 2023 totalled approximately $8.2 million. ICBC data also shows there were 6,143 catalytic converter thefts across B.C. in 2022, up from 89 in 2017. The theft of these converters, which can be executed swiftly and often undetected, poses a growing concern for vehicle owners due to the valuable metals they contain.

 Photo of RCMP officer and mechanic inspecting catalytic converter

Program details:

  1. During a service visit, customers will be offered the free etching service.
  2. With customer consent, the technician etches the VIN onto the catalytic converter.
  3. A window cling label with the shop’s name is placed on the driver’s side window as a program indicator.
  4. Shops will maintain a record of the etched vehicles.

Participating locations :

Participating locations
Location Address Phone number
Canadian Tire 3500 No. 3 Road, Richmond, BC V6X 2C1


Canadian Tire 11388 Steveston Hwy., Richmond BC V7A 5J5

604-271-6657 ext. 261

Hoegler's Muffler City 130 - 5711 No. 3 Road, Richmond, BC V6X 2C9


Ironwood Auto Service Ltd. Unit 8 - 11711 No. 5 Road, Richmond, BC V7A 4E8


KAL Tire 2633 No. 5 Road, Richmond, BC V6X 2S8


Midas 4660 No. 3 Road, Richmond, BC V6X 2C2


Minit-Tune & Brake Unit 160 - 4280 No. 3 Road, Richmond, BC V6X 2C2


MTTM Auto Group 11060 Horseshoe Way, Richmond, BC V7Z 4V5


Red Line Automotive Ltd. Unit 1 - 11711 No. 5 Road, Richmond, BC V7A 4E8


Richmond Motor Works 12271 Bridgeport Road, Richmond, BC V6V 1J4


This partnership reflects our commitment to proactive community policing and our ongoing efforts to deter crime in Richmond. We urge the community to take advantage of this free service and join us in protecting their property, said Chief Superintendent Dave Chauhan, Officer-in-Charge, Richmond RCMP.

Keeping our community safe is paramount, said Mayor Malcolm Brodie. The theft of catalytic converters is a crime that impacts more than just the owners of the vehicles involved. It impacts insurance costs, can have a major impact on our economy as people are unable to get to their workplace, and supports a black market in the handling of stolen goods. We will continue to support the Richmond RCMP in their community policing initiatives and encourage residents to take part in this important program.

Richmond RCMP is actively inviting more shops to join this initiative. Interested parties can contact Richmond RCMP to participate and contribute to community safety.

Photo of decal promoting catalytic converter theft initiative 

For additional information, please contact the Richmond RCMP Crime Prevention Unit at 604-278-1212 or via email at

Together, we can put the brakes on catalytic converter theft and drive down crime in our city.

Released by

Cpl. Dennis Hwang
Media Relations Officer
Richmond RCMP
11411 No. 5 Road, Richmond, BC V7A 4E8
Office: 604-207-5189


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