VICTORIA -- Mounties in the Cowichan Valley are investigating after a troubling string of thefts took place, which officers say rendered vital traffic lights useless.

Investigators are looking into a number of reports where batteries were taken from traffic control devices, including traffic lights and electronic construction signs.

The calls started in July and span through to October of this year.

"Traffic control devices are crucial to keeping our roadways safe for motorists and pedestrians," Sgt. Trevor Busch, with the North Cowichan/Duncan RCMP, wrote in a media release.

"Theft and damage to these devices is not only illegal, but also extremely reckless and dangerous."

Police say the locations of the thefts include the Trans Canada Highway in Duncan and areas near Shawnigan Lake.

Investigators are urging the public to report any inoperable traffic devices they might come across on Vancouver Island.

Anyone with information about these crimes is urged to contact their local police, or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS).