I spent a couple hours Monday visiting with Norm Sneyd, v.p. of business development with Bison Transport. We talked about cargo theft prevention for an upcoming video series you’ll be able to catch on Trucknews.com in a week or so.
Here are a couple things I learned from Norm. There’s more than one good reason to back up tight to a wall or other fixed object when parking a loaded trailer. Of course, it makes it much more difficult to open the trailer doors when you can’t get at them, and that’s the obvious benefit, but parking this way also protects the seal. A disgruntled driver or good-for-nothin’ scallywag who can access the trailer door with little to no difficulty can snip off a trailer seal, possibly rendering the value of the cargo inside worthless – especially if the trailer’s carrying perishable product. Bison has gone so far as to erect concrete walls along the rows of lots where it parks a lot of trailers, so that trailers on both sides can be parked with their rear doors directly against the concrete barrier.
I also learned drivers really shouldn’t stop for breaks near the border. Norm said drug-runners have been known to hang out at truck stops near the border, looking for south- or northbound trucks. When they see a parked truck, they’ll slide under the trailer bolt on a box containing contraband, follow the truck across the border and then remove their goods the next time the truck stops. The truck driver is unwittingly taking on the risk of a lengthy stint in prison.
Also, drivers should always keep an eye out for anything that seems unusual. Think you’re being followed? Pull off at a rest area, drive through and then re-enter the highway. Did the suspicious car do likewise? Chances are good they’re tailing you. This may seem far-fetched, but one Bison driver did this recently and reported the suspicious vehicle. The police apprehended the car’s occupants who were armed and dangerous.
Bison also employs a Neighbourhood Watch program, so that drivers and staff are encouraged to report suspicious activity. If their tips lead to an arrest, cash prizes of up to $5,000 are given to tipsters. You won’t want to miss this two-part video. Check back for it soon.
This is part of a cargo management supplement and online module we’ve created with SGI. You can find it on the home page under Knowledge Centers.
James Menzies is editor of Truck News magazine. He has been covering the Canadian trucking industry for more than 15 years and holds a CDL. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter at @JamesMenzies. All posts by James Menzies