From its launch in December 2006, the ACPO Vehicle Crime Intelligence Service (AVCIS) has recovered nearly 2,000 unlawfully obtained vehicles with an estimated value in excess of 33 million. Even though the Home Office reports vehicle crime is down by 65 per cent since 1995, over 3,000 HGVs are still stolen annually around the UK with only a insubstantial 12 per cent recovery rate.

Half of all vehicles are actually stolen from their own premises. Accounting for over three quarters of all thefts are tipper lorries, drop-side, flat-bed and goods lorries with the most frequently stolen HGV brands being Iveco Ford, Bedford, Leyland DAF and Mercedes.

Reports reveal that vehicles parked on industrial estates accounted for the overwhelming majority HGV theft, whilst just over 10 per cent of vehicles were removed from factory /warehouse parking areas, a third of which over the weekend, so the loss would not be discovered until the Monday morning.

Most victims of HGV theft have found to be SMEs employing ten staff or less followed by the construction industry appearing to be the most vulnerable, finally, distribution and haulage.

It is to be expected that in the current tough economic climate, fleet business operators will be focusing on increasing every aspect of daily operations to raise running efficiency, productivity, and minimise any potential losses from accident or theft.

Anxiety over protecting goods in transit or when temporarily parked can be simply overcome by properly addressing the key issue of vehicle and container security. Ensuring the vital protection of cargo transportation by providing constant en-route and off-road safety surveillance and security, most importantly at times when the driver needs to leaves his vehicle unattended temporarily has been proven to be best solved by deploying a trailer tracking system.

Whilst a GPS vehicle tracking system can generate realtime location reporting direct to base, a mobile asset tracking system can oversee goods delivery vehicles by the use of incorporated motion sensors and door monitoring.

Incredibly, many HGVs still only possess the barest minimum of security protection, such as an ineffectual steering lock and intruder alarm and thus, too easily stolen from locations, even within locked gates and/or fencing. It may take the unfortunate occurrence of a first theft before serious thought is given to relooking at a companys current security measures and consideration is given to installing a vehicle tracking device.

A GPS tracking solution is also invaluable as it can be programmed for monitoring area fencing which allows coordinates to be inputted for alerting if a vehicle strays from a set route or area travel, a parked or in storage overnight location or at any other point along the journey. It is also crucial to supplying the location co-ordinates if a vehicle is unfortunately, stolen and thus, can be more quickly recovered.

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