Cargo theft is one of the largest problems facing drivers and their companies to date, costing $57.9 million in 2021 alone in the U.S. and Canada. Cargo theft has been rising in the past few years. Many believe it is because of the amount of freight that is left idling and the lack of safe parking areas for drivers. These thefts are more often to occur at night, and especially on holiday weekends, when less people are traveling and there is more opportunity for thieves to strike without being noticed.
Cargo Theft Awareness
As a driver, being aware that cargo theft is a problem that will face many drivers on the road is important. You likely know someone, or have mutual friends with someone, who has been a victim of cargo theft and know that it is not a victimless crime. There is loss of money and sometimes credibility for the driver because they were unable to deliver their goods.
Cargo thieves often target trucks that appear to be easy to break into. The ease of access to trucks can also be assessed by their location. Ideally you will be using the best security equipment you can and following safety guidelines, like parking in well-lit areas at night. Preventing cargo theft is often possible, and taking the initiative to guard your freight will help you to make your journeys safely and successfully.
Why Holiday Weekends?
Holiday weekends see a rise in cargo theft for a few reasons. The first of these being that during holiday weekends there is less traffic, which means fewer witnesses for the cargo thieves. Additionally, regular security guards and delivery offloading help may be limited giving thieves a chance to steal cargo. Finally, long holiday weekends mean more people who may be prone to cargo thievery are off work and able to participate in theft.
How To Prevent Cargo Theft
Cargo theft is often a preventable crime. Being aware of your truck, surroundings, and time can help you to stay safe. Maintaining your truck and ensuring the locks are up to date and secure is a great first step to take to protect your freight. Many thieves still get away with their crimes because of old, worn-out locks. Checking your surroundings before pulling off to rest and ensuring your way will be well-lit at nighttime will help keep your trailer safe. Then, noting the time, including the time of day, and how long you’ve been driving (it’s best not to stop within 250 miles of first taking off), can scare off potential thieves.
Don’t let holiday weekends and all their festivities get ruined by cargo theft. By following these tips and doing your research on safe places to pull off along your route, you can help keep your cargo safe until it reaches its destination. This is not a full list of things you can do to prevent cargo theft but doing some research on everything from security tech to cargo theft data along your route can act as preventative measures. Stay safe out there!