Statistics released yesterday by Truckersworld suggested that thefts from lorries have risen by 63 per cent in the last year; however, in stark contrast, TruckPol, a unit dedicated to combating freight crime, has disputed the claim, announcing that the rate of offences has in fact fallen.
TruckPol, a division of the ACPO Vehicle Crime Intelligence Service (AVCIS), has seen an 18.9 per cent decrease in offences in the first six months of 2009, compared to the same period in 2008. The unit attributes this to intelligence operations, resulting in the disruption of offenders and the conviction of stolen goods handlers.
Although it is recognised that there is generally a downward trend in the rate of offences, TruckPol is still working hard alongside its partners and stakeholders to ensure that freight crime continues to be on the decline. Recent TruckPol initiatives include partnering with NS-FRITS (North Sea Freight Intelligent Transport Solutions) to make working safer and easier for freight drivers across the North Sea Region. The majority of thefts from lorries occur while drivers are parked and asleep, and the problem of unsecured truck stops is one that TruckPol and NS-FRITS is tackling by providing intelligence to ensure that workers are aware of high-risk areas.
TruckPol is also working with other partner agencies and stakeholders, such as risk and security company BRM Solutions to support their new initiative, Haulnet, a website showing truck stops across the UK to enable drivers to plan their routes more effectively.
“Protecting drivers and their loads is our utmost priority,” said Alan Soames, Intelligence Officer at TruckPol. “Although we recognise that the rate of offences is decreasing, it does not mean that the problem should be removed from the agenda; only constant enforcement will ensure that the crime rate continues to decrease.
“Recent initiatives, such as the TruckPol hotspot trailer and the increased publicity of the issue have helped reduce the rate of offences, but we still need to work harder to ensure that drivers and their loads are protected.”