CARGO THEFT steals up to $9 billion a year from companies shipping goods within
Canada – an amount that exceeds the entire 12-month retail sales volume of
Newfoundland/Labrador, PEI, Yukon and the Northwest Territories combined.
It is among the fastest-growing crimes that are organized and increasingly violent. Brazen,
daylight robberies are not unusual anymore and driver injury and hijacking is on the rise.
Revenue from the thefts is often used to fund other criminal activities such as drug and gun
trafficking and gang activity.
Unfortunately it is difficult to pinpoint the exact number of cargo thefts across Canada as
many go unreported and for those that do, some police agencies class them in other
categories including break and enter. It’s estimated for every cargo theft that’s reported,
four times as many are not called in to police or insurance.
Cargo theft is a low risk and high reward situation where criminal sentencing is minimal.
Many police forces can’t afford the dedicated manpower to combat the problem. Criminals
are well aware of this situation and virtually can steal anything and know the chances of
getting caught are negligible at best.
To assist fleets in combating this criminal activity the Private Motor Truck Council of
Canada has compiled a Security Guide Checklist using information from a number of
sources. The Checklist is available as a free download from the PMTC website.
The Security Guide Checklist is offered for fleets that wish to establish a security protocol
or that wish to review their existing security practices. It represents some of the current
best practices of fleet operators along with advice from insurance companies, and
guidelines from the C-TPAT program.
For ease of use, the Guide is presented in sections that address different physical and
personnel related activities that are found in most trucking operations.
While comprehensive, the Guide cannot cover every aspect of security and users are
encouraged to consider other sources. Those who wish to add to the Guide for the benefit
of all users can do so by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Develop a loss prevention / security committee to review and monitor all security procedures
Consider implementing and promoting an internal “tips” line that is completely anonymous
Report EVERY incident of theft or other criminal activity to police
Conduct thorough checks on all first time business partners and customers, including load
brokers if they are used
Consider conducting a 3rd party review of all security procedures and systems
IN THE YARD
Yard is well lit
Yard is completely fenced
Private automobiles are not permitted to park near trucks or trailers
Fencing includes alarm system that is activated when breached
Yard has motion detector system activated in off-hours
Yard has a security service
At all times During off-hours
Security service or dispatch has a view of the entire yard at all times
Entry and exit is controlled by security kiosk / gate
At all times During working hours only During off-hours only
Security service is on hand 24hrs / day and 7 days / week
Security service is on hand only when during non-working hours
Shipping doors are kept locked in off hours and secured with motion detectors
Interior of building is monitored with motion detectors
Interior, shipping doors, and yard are monitored by security cameras
Remove any trees or objects that would allow people to gain access over fences
Loaded trailers are always backed up to a shipping door, building, or other trailer
King pin locks are used
Wheel locks are used
Trailer seals are used
Trailer doors are kept locked and / or sealed, and inspected after every on route stop
Trucks are kept locked when parked in the yard and keys are kept locked inside the building
Engine kill or other remote vehicle disabling system can be used to shut down tractors
All security related equipment is monitored to ensure it is in working order
Fuel credit cards have limitations on amount that can be purchased
Do not allow trucks to be parked at a residence without satisfactory security
Routes are carefully selected to avoid dangerous or unmonitored areas wherever possible
Transit times are monitored and drivers must account for significant delays
Equipment tracking systems are used on all tractors and trailers and deviations from planned
routes are flagged.
Electronic logs are used and monitored for discrepancies or unusual delays
All security related policies and procedures are current and reviewed at least annually
Security related policies and procedures are reviewed with transportation staff at least annually
All transportation personnel undergo extensive background checks during hiring process
Security systems and procedures undergo periodic ‘tests’ by management or 3rd party
Dispatchers / managers are trained to monitor drivers for discontent or changes in behaviour
Employees wear Company Identification at all times
Employee identification, facility access cards or keys are recovered when employment ceases
All personnel are trained to report unauthorized personnel or activity in the yard or building
Employees are encouraged to report attempts to threaten or bribe them for information on
shipments or routes
Drivers are trained to:
o avoid unsecured locations when parking or dropping equipment
o watch for unusual activity such as being followed on the road
o report in to dispatch
o walk around vehicle to look for foreign objects after each stop
o not to discuss their cargo or route on open channels or in truck stops
o stay on designated / planned routes or report deviations immediately
The company has a “No Riders” policy and it is enforced
Transportation personnel are subject to drug and alcohol testing
Random Post incident On hiring
Drivers carry communication devices for immediate contact with dispatch
Wage schedules and working conditions are competitive to discourage participation in theft
Drivers are trained to inspect all equipment for natural or hidden compartments after every
stop en route or at customers