Here's something you hear about often; and even if you did - not in multiples.  The Proctor Police Department is seeking help from the general public in locating the suspects involved in multiple manhole cover thefts and a catch basin grate. The situation was shared by the Proctor Police Department on their social media page on September 7.

According to the details from the police department, the manhole covers were stolen from their (somewhat) stationary locations in the middle of the road at 6th Street and 4th Avenue and two additional ones near the 4th Street and Ugstad Road area.  The catch basin grate that is also missing was from the 5th Street and 3rd Avenue area.

In response to the thefts, the Proctor Police are looking for any information someone from the general public can share.  If you have details that would be pertinent to the case, you're asked to call the Proctor Police Department via the 911 emergency number.

Proctor, MN water tower
Nick Cooper - TSM Duluth

What's especially perplexing about the thefts is the location and the size of the covers.  Manhole covers are usually "made out of cast iron, concrete, or a combination of the two". According to most reports, they usually weigh more than 249 pounds a piece.  Additionally, they usually fit their circular hole quite tightly (by design) and are difficult to pry up; some manhole covers require the use of a special tool to start the removal process.

Frosted puddle with round old sewer manhole
Evgeny Sergeev

Sources report that the theft of manhole covers "often increase when scrap metal prices are high" as they can be sold off for their scrap value.  However, you would think that that process would have some inherent difficulties; first, you would need to deal with the removal and hauling of such a heavy object.  Additionally, most scrap dealers won't trade in items like manhole covers or catalytic converters - items that are most-obviously stolen property.

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