Get your catalytic converter marked for free in Bedford as thefts begin to rise

Police and National Tyres offer security as part of joint operation

By Clare Turner
Monday, 20th December 2021, 1:05 pm
Updated Monday, 20th December 2021, 1:06 pm

Bedfordshire Police has teamed up with National Tyres to offer motorists the chance to get a free security marking etched on their vehicle’s catalytic converter.

National Tyres - in Ashburnham Road, Bedford - has around 1,000 etching kits and is offering the service for free on any vehicle that has been booked in for a winter check service.

Whilst the converter is being etched, National Tyres staff will register the vehicle details with Smartwater, so if it is ever stolen and later recovered, police can match it to your vehicle.

National Tyres, in Ashburnham Road, Bedford

Catalytic converters are being targeted by thieves as they contain small amounts of precious metals, such as platinum, palladium and rhodium.

Lesley Johnson, Design Out crime officer at Bedfordshire Police, said: “We tend to get a spike of catalytic converter thefts in the winter months, and with the current cost of these metal particles remaining high, this type of theft is very likely to continue.

“By encouraging as many people as we can to get their catalytic converters etched and display warning stickers on the vehicle, which is included in the kit, I am hoping that this initiative will prevent further thefts.

“Initially it seemed to be Japanese cars that were the main vehicles affected, but now it would appear that any vehicle, both private or commercially owned with a catalytic converter that is easily accessible can be a target."