COMPETITION WATCH: Schneider National reduces cargo theft by 35%

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GREEN BAY, Wis. — Schneider National says it reduced its cargo theft rates by 35% last year, it’s fifth straight year of decreased incidences even as cargo theft escalates across North America.

FreightWatch’s International 2011 Annual Cargo Theft Report indicated cargo theft was actually up 8.3% last year. Schneider says it has bucked the trend, with the 35% decline marking the largest drop in its history.

Schneider credits its success to a “multi-layered approach consisting of proactive communication with shippers, Schneider drivers and owner/operators, methodical procedures and top-notch technology.”

Walter Fountain, director of loss prevention and enterprise security, says one key is using team drivers to move high-value loads, ensuring freight is constantly moving and less susceptible to theft.

“The number one theft countermeasure is communication. By understanding the ins and outs of the freight we’re shipping and how we engineer the loads, we are able to drastically alleviate risk as a fully synchronized team with our customer,” he explains.

He also said educating drivers and owner/operators is paramount.

“There are really three legs to this: we address expectations during on-boarding; we regularly communicate the locations and types of thefts that are occurring; and we incorporate cargo theft preventable measures into our quarterly training sessions,” Fountain says. Schneider also has utilized technology to deter theft.

“We’ve seen that a combination of high-tech and low-tech security measures working together make a significant difference when it comes to freight security,” Fountain says. Piloting new security products, satellite tracking on tractors, trailers and containers, 24/7 security monitoring, and high-security locks and seals on loads are some of the ways the company has reduced its cargo theft incidences.

Schneider National has produced a white paper, case study and other resources on cargo theft prevention which is available online here.

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