CargoNet is tracking an increase in incident reports throughout the country. Incident reports were up 6% from the previous month in May 2022 and 25% year-over-year. In order to help transportation professionals, mitigate the increased risks associated with the upcoming Fourth of July holiday, we reviewed reported theft incidents from between July 1 and July 7 for the past five years.
Theft was lowest during the 2019 Holiday and has been higher than average for both 2020 and 2021. Thefts were most frequent in Texas, California, Florida, and Tennessee. More specifically, activity was most frequent in major cities in those states like Los Angeles, CA; Dallas, TX; and Memphis, TN. Thieves most commonly targeted vehicles and shipments that were parked at large retail parking lots and truck stops and targeted household and food and beverage commodities the most.
We consider theft to be elevated from the initial wave of the COVID-19 Pandemic. Constraints like staffing issues, high fuel costs, congestion problems at NJ/NY Area Ports, and rapidly changing inventory conditions are all contributing factors that can make theft of a semi-truck, semi-trailer, or its shipment more desirable.
Organized cargo theft rings that target shipments throughout the Southeast and Midwest showed a strong presence during the Memorial Day holiday and continue to operate. In order to mitigate risk of theft, transporters invest in high-security locks, tracking devices, and secured parking whenever possible. Warehouse operators should be on high alert as well, because of numerous high-value warehouse burglaries of electronics goods around this past Memorial Day holiday.
Noteworthy thefts from previous July 4th holidays:
- $2,000,000 of perfume from Hillsborough Township, New Jersey
- $439,895 in medical supplies from Davenport, Florida
- $352,000 of computer electronics from San Francisco, California
- $328,321 of toys from Trevor, Wisconsin
- $314,191 of computer electronics from Commerce, California