GPS-tracking device led police to stolen truck, cargo thieves

A GPS-tracking device led Canadian police to arrest four men who allegedly attempted to steal a tractor-trailer and its cargo over the holiday weekend (Canada Day was Friday, July 1).

According to South Simcoe Police, on July 3 just before 6 p.m. officers responded to a call of a stolen tractor-trailer on Reagen's Industrial Parkway in Bradford. The owners of the truck had tracked its location on GPS, and responding officers spotted the truck heading south.

“As the officers approached and attempted to apprehend the tractor-trailer, a van behind the truck impeded their progress,” according to police. “Officers were able to stop both the truck and van, arresting the driver of the van. By the time they got to the truck, the driver had fled on foot.”

York Regional Police Canine Unit tracked the suspect, who was eventually arrested. Other officers responded to the original location and located a rented cube van and two suspects who had been detained by the original callers. Those two men were also taken into custody, and police seized a quantity of stolen items that they had offloaded from the tractor-trailer.

Last week, Travelers Insurance and FreightWatch International reported that on holiday weekends, cargo theft jumps as much as 40% in the U.S. Scott Cornell, the transportation crime and theft specialist at Travelers, has made several recommendations to help shippers and carriers protect their cargo. Among them was installing covert tracking systems on all shipments and monitoring the location of all loads left staged.

And FreightWatch agreed. “Covert GPS tracking and active monitoring of high value shipments are highly recommended, as they have proven to be the most effective protocols to both mitigate in-transit theft and facilitate successful recovery of stolen product,” the company said.

Based on what happened in Canada over the weekend, GPS tracking proved to be an invaluable asset for one carrier.

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