The Fast and the Furious movies make cargo theft seem thrilling. However, in reality, cargo theft is much more mundane and commonplace. It occurs quite frequently and usually doesn’t involve a high-speed chase. Every year, criminals steal millions of dollars’ worth of cargo. In 2017, experts estimate that thieves stole about $145 million of freight in the USA and Canada.
If you transport cargo, then you are probably interested in reducing your risk of theft. After all, each shipment you send out is worth a lot of money, and to have that stolen can be devastating for business. However, you can minimize the chances that your transportation and logistics plans will put your cargo at risk.
Here are our top cargo container security tips:
Use a Reputable Carrier
Transportation service specialists with an excellent reputation do everything within their power to prevent theft. Ecology Recycling and Transportation Services is the local carrier you can trust for safe transport. At Ecology, we offer a range of transportation and logistics services including handling international shipments, heavy loads and rail transloading.
Rest assured that we implement a full range of safety measures to ensure the safety of your cargo. In the safety tips below, you’ll learn more about the precautions we take when transporting containers.
Use Electronic Tracking When Possible
The majority of container thefts take place when there’s no electronic tracking of the container. For this reason, investigators struggle even to determine what day the robbery occurred. Electronic monitoring or GPS technology means carriers can track vessels in real time.
Here at Ecology, all of our trucks have drive camera and GPS technology, allowing us to stay up to date with transport progress. As a result, we can detect any deviation from the route immediately. The sooner we can notify the authorities, the more likely they’ll be able to find the cargo. However, given the many steps we take to ensure safety, theft is a rare occurrence for us.
Safe Transport Practices
Carriers and truck drivers can help prevent cargo container theft by following safe transport practices. This refers to the habits and procedures truck drivers follow when moving your cargo across the country. Many carriers establish official rest stops that are safe for truck drivers to use. Some rest stops may have a reputation for being linked to cargo theft, so designated service stations are a great solution to this problem.
Truck drivers can also prevent theft by using safe parking practices. This means parking in well-lit areas as close to the service station as possible. Truck drivers should also report any tampering they notice while parked at a rest stop to alert the rest of the team.
During transport, it’s also best to place a locking system on the container. This can also deter thieves. Even a simple padlock can make a difference.
Quality Service Center Protection and Coordination
The most common places for cargo theft are in warehouses and fenced-in yards. Poor surveillance at some of these centers makes them the perfect targets for thieves. This means that service center protection must offer excellent security. What should you look for in a quality service center?
– Fencing: Some centers use electric fencing, while others use secure, high fences. The service centers should also have staff who patrol the perimeter regularly.
– Alarm System: A good alarm system can also prevent theft. Ask what sort of alarm systems there are at the service center where your cargo will stop.
– Lighting: Good lighting is another deterrent of thieves. The better the illumination, the more likely the thieves won’t take the risk of getting caught.
– Coordination: Your carrier should offer excellent coordination between facilities. This means that each facility should have an estimated time of arrival for your cargo. That way, if the container doesn’t show up, a search can begin immediately.
– Storage: High-quality service centers offer additional storage options for trailers and containers carrying high-value items.
With these features, service centers are very safe for your container. If you’re not sure about your carrier’s facilities, ask!
Here at Ecology, we make an effort to offer the safest transportation and logistics services possible. In addition to the above precautions, we also provide a modern fleet of vehicles. All of our trucks are from 2009 or more recent. Our connections allow us to do deliveries anywhere west of the Mississippi. Partner with us for the best cargo container security!