Watchdog firm warns of ‘red zone’ thefts

cargo theft
FreightWatch International warns of thefts in the “red zone”

Cargo theft tracking firm FreightWatch International issued an alert recently saying it has seen three “red zone” truckload thefts in the last three weeks, stemming from what it says is an “unusually high rate in violations of best practices for in-transit security.”

FreightWatch defines the cargo red zone as within 200 miles of a loads origin, and the three recent thefts were caused by “staging cargo within the red zone,” FreightWatch says in its alert.

A large majority of cargo thefts occur within the first 200 miles of transport, FreightWatch says, and it recommends that carriers and truck operators should take measures to avoid red zone stops.

Truck operators should make sure they have enough hours on their 14-hour clock and their tractor has enough fuel to drive beyond the red zone after leaving a shipper with a load.

“Emergency stops within a Red Zone should be carefully monitored with constant communication between the driver and over-watch service strictly enforced,” FreightWatch advises. “Lastly, unattended staging for any length of time in the red zone should be avoided at all costs.”

If red zone stops can’t be avoided, drivers should park in a well-lit secured area with the trailer backed against an obstacle or permanent fixture.

“Employ sound technology such as brake locks, fuel cut-offs and covert GPS tracking with active monitoring,” to further protect loads, FW says.