Tips for Preventing Semi Truck Cargo Theft
For many transportation firms, cargo theft is a major worry. Although carriers and shippers frequently have policies in place to avoid cargo theft, there are several things a truck driver may do to lessen the chance that their vehicle will be the target of cargo thieves.
How does cargo theft happen?
The theft of goods often falls into two categories: pilferage and hijacking. Most often, thieves steal cargo in order to resell it on the illicit market. And using one of the two cargo theft techniques will enable them to steal your shipment.
Pilferage is the taking of a few boxes or other items from a load by cargo robbers. They enter your trailer by force, rapidly take what they can carry, and take off with a little portion of your cargo with them. Truck stops, rest areas, and other locations where your truck could be left unattended are where these kinds of thefts frequently happen.
It may not seem like a huge matter for criminals to remove a few parts of large cargo, but if you are carrying pricey items it might be an expensive problem.
When a robber or group of thieves seizes control of your vehicle and drives off with the full trailer, this is called a hijacking. For the driver, this type of cargo theft is far more hazardous, as it happens while the vehicle is moving. These criminals frequently work for organized criminal groups and have a set process for stealing semi-trucks. Potential hijackers may be discouraged by the presence of a GPS monitoring system and a dash camera. No matter what sort of goods you’re transporting, you should always report any suspicious behavior to the police.
How do you prevent cargo theft?
Being aware of your surroundings is the most crucial thing you can do to avoid cargo theft. Take precautions to protect yourself and your cargo if you see anything odd while driving or when parked at a petrol station or rest area. This can be as easy as contacting the police, but it can also require you to move your vehicle to a better parking space close to security cameras or well-lit places.
Watch out for a vehicle that could be following you if you’re on the road. Make a couple U-turns and phone the police and your fleet dispatcher if you believe someone is following you and you are concerned that your vehicle may be a criminal target. While you wait for the authorities to come if you can drive into a well-lit gas station, police station, or another safe location.
Always park in a safe place
When you stop your vehicle, look to see whether there are any security cameras in the area and if so, try to park such that you can see them. Additionally, you might want to position so that your cargo is more difficult for attackers to reach by placing the back doors in front of a wall or other object.
It might be difficult to unwind and go asleep for the night if you’ve parked your large rig and you see someone suspiciously close to your vehicle. Call the dispatch and the police to keep them informed. If you’re able to and your hours of operation permit it, you might wish to transfer your truck.
Buy a dash camera
Dashboard cameras are frequently used by truck drivers to protect themselves in the case of an accident, but they may also be very helpful in avoiding cargo theft or at least in assisting in the capture of criminals if they are robbed.
There are several inexpensive choices that are well worth the expense to keep yourself safe, but if your trucking firm doesn’t pay for a dash cam to safeguard you and the cargo, you still have plenty of options.
It’s crucial to communicate with your dispatch often. Every time a driver stops, some trucking firms require them to check in so they may report their position, the length of the trip, and other details. This is especially valid if you’re moving high-risk goods like electronics or food and drinks. If you operate your own vehicle, it’s a good idea to let your loved ones or friends know where you are and when you anticipate arriving at your next location. The investigation will move forward a great deal faster if anything happens in the meantime.
Plan the route
Take particular care while arranging your route if you are transporting valuable goods that are vulnerable to theft. Avoiding high-crime locations (hot spots) and truck stops with a history of cargo theft may not always be practical, but you may reduce your risk by designing your route to avoid them as much as possible.
Large metro regions and port cities have greater rates of cargo theft than other places. Additionally, thefts are far more likely to happen while people are traveling during the holidays.