In August 2020, over €3,071,007 (£2,650,968) worth of goods were stolen from HGV loads in the UK. According to the National Vehicle Crime Intelligence Services (NAVCIS), in January 2021, there were over 60 reports of cargo thefts from HGVs, amounting to over £1 million worth of goods stolen.
With such large loads of goods that are usually worth lots of money, HGVs are particularly attractive to thieves, making them incredibly vulnerable to theft. In order to prevent a thief gaining access to your vehicles and making an escape with the good inside, it is absolutely essential to take the right steps to protect your vehicles. In this guide, we’ll be taking a look at some ways in which you can protect your HGVs from theft.
1. Remember to lock your vehicle
Ensure your drivers know to lock their vehicles every time they leave, even if only for a short time or a short distance e.g. from the pavement to the delivery address. It only takes a few seconds for a thief to get into your van and take off with the good in the back. All windows and doors should also be shut and locked and keys should be kept with the driver at all times. Wheel locks can also help to deter and prevent thieves from stealing your vehicle.
2. Park in Safe Locations
A large percentage of vehicle related crimes occur at night so ensuring your vehicles are parked in a well-lit, safe place that is open to public view with CCTV is essential. Alternatively, if you keep your vehicles at your warehouse, make sure you have plenty of security measures in place such as CCTV and password protected gates.
3. Keep Valuables Out of Sight
If a thief can see items of value inside a vehicle, they are more likely to break in to steal them. This is why you should ensure your drivers always keep valuable vehicle contents such as sat navs, mobile phones, dash cams and the goods in the back well out of sight.
4. Avoid Keyless Entry/Start Fobs Theft
Nowadays, thieves can use a technique to steal vehicles that involves copying a ‘keyless’ key signal to another device which is placed close to the vehicle. This fools the vehicle into thinking the genuine key is present and allows a thief to get in and drive away with all the goods inside.
This is why, if you have keyless fobs, you should always make sure they are kept in a secure location, away from doors and windows and ideally in a metal (Faraday) box or signal blocking pouch when not in use as this can prevent thieves from being able to copy the signals and stop them getting into your HGV.
5. Implement Vehicle Tracking Devices
Vehicle trackers are incredibly effective at preventing theft and aiding the recovery of vehicles which do end up getting stolen. Simply having a ‘GPS Tracked’ sticker alone can act as a deterrent for many thieves.
Fortunately, Fleetsmart has the solution for you. Our HGV tracking devices can help to reduce the chances of vehicle theft in a range of different ways, from preventing a thief from turning on the ignition to tracking down stolen vehicles instantly.
Our remote immobilisation tool is an optional add-on that we offer here at Fleetsmart and is an excellent way of preventing your vehicles from being stolen or preventing thieves from getting very far with your vehicle.
They operate by sending a remote signal to the vehicle’s engine management system which then prevents the engine from restarting when it is next turned off. This means a thief may get away with the initial break in and manage to set off, but they won’t be able to get very far or restart the engine once they have stopped.
Not only can this prevent a thief from making significant progress with your vehicle but it also sends a notification to your device when activated, allowing you and the police to track your HGV’s location with our advanced and highly accurate GPS technology, helping you to recover your vehicle quickly and easily, reducing significant stress and financial loss.
If a daring thief does decide to take their chances, our geo-fence alerts can send you a notification when a vehicle exits or enters a location it shouldn’t between specific times. This is an effective method of ensuring your vehicles aren’t being taken from your warehouse after working hours.
Accurate GPS Tracking
In the event that a thief does still somehow manage to take one of your vehicles, with such accurate GPS tracking software, you should be able to track them down in a matter of seconds and alert the police of the vehicle’s location to be recovered, potentially saving your business thousands of pounds.
At Fleetsmart, we are constantly further developing our technology in-house to make sure it is the most sophisticated and up-to-date, ensuring the tracking of your vehicle is as accurate as possible. This includes our European tracking feature which allows you to monitor your fleet vehicles even when they’re operating outside of the UK.
With a Fleetsmart tracker on your HGV, or with a fleet of HGVs, you can relax knowing no thief will be able to outsmart our technology, meaning you’ll always be able to locate your vehicles. Not only does this protect you from losing your vehicles to theft, but most insurance companies will give you a discount if you have a vehicle tracker fitted, a win, win.
For more tips and advice for your fleet, why not take a look at our blog. Find out more about tracking for your HGVs by getting in touch with one of our helpful team members who will be happy to answer any questions you may have.