The third quarter of 2020 saw a 23% increase in cargo theft over the same time last year (according to AJOT).
It’s more important than ever to keep yourself safe on the road and protect your cargo from would-be thieves. They’re organized, ready, sophisticated, and successful. What’s an honest Trucker to do?
The best way to combat this problem is with knowledge – the who, what, when, and where of cargo theft. TruckLogics has the inside dirt to help you beat cargo thieves!
What Are Cargo Thieves After?
Whether you’re a trucking company owner operator or a driver yourself, you’re probably hauling something of value these days. Electronics, pharmaceuticals, cleaning supplies, personal protective equipment, and food goods continue to be targeted by thieves.
According to the FBI, cargo theft losses total $15 to $30 billion annually – an average that is expected to peak in the coming months. Historically, the period between Labor Day and the December Holidays is the worst for cargo theft.
The third quarter of 2020 showed an uptick in household cleaning supplies and personal protective equipment being stolen. During the same period, 223 cases of cargo theft were reported in the US and Canada, with a total value of $33.77 million (according to AJOT).
Many cargo thieves tend to target food and beverage items because many fresh goods don’t have serial numbers and can be more difficult to trace. US food products generally lack any type of RFID tracking tag attached or hidden in their packaging.
How Do They Do It?
Modern cargo thieves display a great level of sophistication. Many thieves today focus on shipping facilities, surveilling their establishments and tracking the route times of truck departures and arrivals. However, that doesn’t mean truckstops have suddenly become completely safe. All too often, truckers find themselves under risk of theft or bodily harm in the name of a quick buck. And it’s not as simple as making sure your cab doors are locked anymore.
We probably don’t need to remind you that no matter what you’re hauling, money isn’t worth putting yourself in unnecessary danger. Not everyone is on your side, but luckily for you, TruckLogics is! Here are some common-sense tips to help you avoid theft on your next truck route!
Loss Prevention & Safety Tips for Drivers:
Do not discuss the nature of your cargo with strangers.
If carrying valuable cargo, travel at least 250 miles before stopping in case you are being followed.
If you need to relay your cargo to another fleet member, make the transfer face-to-face.
Never separate a valuable load from your vehicle unless it is in a locked and secure area.
When separated, always secure your trailer with a kingpin lock or additional locks for extra security.
Always lock up your truck and trailer while parked, even when still inside.
Only park in well-lit, populated areas.
Loss Prevention & Safety Tips for the Owner-Operators:
Complete full background checks on all new employees and contractors.
Always use experienced drivers to transport valuable cargo.
Provide driver safety and awareness training.
Develop formal security procedures for your drivers in case something happens.
Invest in quality locks and security devices for your vehicles and trailers.
Consider using Assisted Global Positioning System (AGPS) devices.
Regularly check your Safety Measurement System (SMS) report for any fraudulent activity.
At TruckLogics, our goal is to help trucking companies streamline fleet management in every way, including actively reducing cargo theft. If you are ever the victim of theft, our sister product ExpressTruckTax can help you deal with the aftermath! Their software allows you to report any stolen vehicle for tax credit. They’ll even let you transfer the taxes to your new truck with ease. You can even do it all with their convenient mobile app!
With a 100% US-based customer service team and nationally coordinated data-sharing system, ExpressTruckTax is designed to help your trucking company decrease losses and increase profits.