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Preventing Metal Theft

Metal theft is a real issue in the recycling community and we are committed to confronting this issue head on.  We believe it is the right of law abiding citizens to recycle privately owned materials for a profit.  We do not want to see your rights infringed upon by frivolous new legislation therefore, we are committed to carefully observing current laws and cooperating with state and local law enforcement to prevent on-going metal theft.

We make sure all of our employees are aware of current theft reports and on the lookout for materials reported as stolen.  We use state-of-the-art imaging technology to comply with current recycling laws; we document who is selling metals and what they are selling.  We have a close working relationship with law enforcement and regularly volunteer any information we believe may be helpful in leading to the arrest of a metal thief or recovering stolen materials.

For our customers, we make recycling as convenient as possible while complying with current recycling laws.  For law enforcement, we are proving a ready partner in the fight to prevent on-going metal theft.  For a criminal, Burcham’s Metals is the wrong place to attempt to sell stolen materials.


Metal Recycling Laws

If you are considering selling recyclable metal property, for your convenience, we have listed some of the most significant changes.  This law is a statewide requirement; you should expect to see these changes implemented at every law abiding metal recycling business in Oregon.

  • In accordance with state law, please be prepared to present us with your current valid driver’s license or other government-issued photo identification before unloading any materials.
  • The law requires recycling businesses to hold payments for any non-ferrous metal purchases for 3 business days.  Payments made by check may only be sent to a post office box if it’s listed on the valid ID presented for the transaction.
  • Qualified commercial accounts are exempt from the waiting period for non-ferrous metal payments.
  • The seller is responsible to carry a completed “Metal Transportation Certificate” (MTC) when transporting scrap metal intended for sale to a recycling business.  Transporting scrap metal without a completed MTC with the intent to sell is a Class C Misdemeanor.

Click here to access a printable Oregon State Police approved Metal Transportation Certificate.

Contact your Senator or Representative

Do you have comments or concerns about the metal law?  Please contact your state senator or representative.  To search for your state senator and representative using your home address click here.


Protecting Your Property

The scrap value of your metal may surprise you.  Implementing the following measures will help protect you against metal theft and aid in the recovery of stolen materials:

  • Lock valuables out of sight
  • Label metal property
  • Photo-catalog inventory
  • Report thefts immediately
  • Forward information to metal recyclers
  • Support metal recyclers who cooperate with law enforcement

Theft Reports

If you have had an item stolen and you believe a thief may attempt to sell it for scrap at Burcham’s Metals, we would like to help you.

  • File a police report immediately! Thieves try to sell items as quickly as possible to beat the reporting process.
  • Contact us as soon as you have filed a report: you can leave us a message if it is not during normal business hours.  We will need to know the date of the theft, a detailed description of the item, your case number and the name of the officer assigned to your case.  Photographs are also very helpful.
  • We will contact the officer assigned to your case if we receive any information.