Get the truck out of here! I mean, as long as we are going for the ridiculous conclusion, why stop at the thieves’ desire to take the cargo.
If the cargo did not exist? Well, then, problem solved.
I learned the industry from the LTL side first and let me tell you, there are many more points of access for thieves to steal cargo in LTL. From the shipper packaging rocks instead of VCRs to the phone call from a breakbulk dock to a point man at a rest stop, theft is everywhere.
I learned some truths about theft.
- If you think you have a theft problem, then you do.
- If you think you don’t have a theft problem, then you have a big one.
- It isn’t the new suspicious employee. It’s the 20-year award-winner with all the respect, knowledge, contacts, friends, enemies, people that owe him favors, customers that love him, and…are you getting my point?
- Routine screams – rip-me-off!
I ran across an article that listed five things to do to avoid theft of cargo in truckload.
I changed the order to protect the obvious.
Consider Using Asset Tracking on All Loads
Good advice here actually. For a shipper. Trucker, hmmm…not so much.
Here is the thing, in my LTL days we made it mandatory for pick-up and delivery (P&D) drivers to padlock their trailers. Theft was reduced by 40%. Get the point?
Truckload is no different. There’s a whole lot of opportunity from the open swinging doors bumping the dock to a driver getting to the back door. If, and that’s a huge if, the driver is even allowed to verify counts.
Obviously this is not necessarily a carrier issue, nor a driver’s. But it is a hole in the process that even blockchain (I laugh) can’t fix.
Park in Well-Lit Parts of Rest Areas
Get out of here, Captain Obvious! Are you trying to tell me thieves don’t like bright lights and cameras on them while they perform?
How often do you really get to choose your parking space?
Think it might be easier if there were enough well-lit and secure parking spots?
Always Ensure That the Cab and Trailer are Locked
This just in – locks deter theft!
Because, everyone knows that a thief looking to unload a trailer in a parking lot is never going to suspect that they might need a decent pair of bolt cutters.
Be Aware of Your Surroundings
Okay, on this one, I agree that people need some guidance. I learned this on the LTL docks and in the CFS warehouses in Maritime. Move with intentional randomness and purpose.
Sounds crazy but, break it down like this.
- Fight the urge to be routine in nature. Try to do things differently. Don’t walk around the truck the same way every time. Take different routes to and from locations at rest areas.
- At least look like you are aware, and at minimum fake checking for thieves. Check locks, walk around the truck, scope the field behind the parking. That type of thing works and doesn’t take long.
And if anyone is scoping the lot, they are looking for easy prey. Those types of things scream awareness.
Do Not Park Alone
Until we get more parking, this one is gonna be easy!
Peace and love