Cargo thieves are poised to strike at unattended shipments and closed warehouses this weekend as many logistics employees take vacation days for the Labor Day holiday, a trend that will be exacerbated in 2020 by the trend of many people working from their home offices during the pandemic, a new report says.
The most common day for cargo theft is the Friday before Labor Day, according to an analysis of historical trends over that period from 2014 to 2019 performed by CargoNet, a New Jersey-based cargo theft solution provider.
CargoNet recorded 161 theft events across the U.S. and Canada in the time spanning the Thursday before Labor Day to the Wednesday after Labor Day over those years, involving a total of 202 trucks, trailers, chassis, and containers stolen. Theft events were highest in California, Texas, and New Jersey, as well as 25 other states and provinces.
Thieves typically prefer to steal electronics commodities, focusing on computers and televisions, but CargoNet says that like any business, they follow market demands. So during the lingering Covid-19 pandemic, that means thieves will likely target food and beverage commodities such as meat products and beer, as well as medical supplies including gloves and masks.
In defense against the long-standing trend of Labor Day theft, supply chain professionals can park only in secured facilities with deterrents such as high-visibility lighting, secured fences, surveillance video, or staffed guard services, CargoNet said. Securing trailers with locks and seals can also help prevent these burglaries.