Totalline “playing it safe” with new security initiative
December 1, 2007
MISSISSAUGA, Ont. - Totalline Transport is partnering with the Canadian Crime Stoppers Association and the RCMP Pipeline/Convoy Criminal Interdiction Program in an effort to help keep the country's tr...
MISSISSAUGA, Ont. – Totalline Transport is partnering with the Canadian Crime Stoppers Association and the RCMP Pipeline/Convoy Criminal Interdiction Program in an effort to help keep the country’s transportation system secure.
Totalline, which owns more than 500 pieces of trucking equipment, will be featuring Crime Stoppers’ phone number (1-800-222-TIPS) on the back of each one of its trailers in order to heighten the public’s awareness of cargo theft. As well, an undisclosed number of Totalline’s existing trailers will feature the Crime Stoppers/Totalline logo, Crime Stoppers phone number and the phrase “Keeping Transportation Secure,” but all new trailers added in 2008 will feature the logo, says Totalline president, Uwe Petroschke. The initiative was officially introduced during an event at the Husky Travel Center in Mississauga, Ont. Oct. 30.
Petroschke says Totalline first started thinking seriously about safety a few years ago, when the company hired a retired detective from the Toronto police force to head up its security.
“Through his involvement… we came to realize what a big problem we have. I didn’t realize that the industry and Canada itself had this problem,” Petroschke said. “If I wasn’t aware as an owner of a trucking company that we had such a large problem, the shipping public and the general public and our employees, they certainly didn’t. So we decided to start a campaign of awareness.”
“Crime Stoppers has always been a proponent of having relationships with corporations within our community. When Totalline expressed interest in partnering up with Crime Stoppers it just seemed to be a natural fit, so we were quite happy to become involved with the organization,” says Gary Murphy, Crime Stoppers’ international president. “With Totalline, their community is a lot larger than just our normal boundaries around the Metropolitan area. (Totalline) have transports travelling thousands and thousands of kilometres across the country, so having signage (on the trucks) certainly reminds people and brings it to their awareness level.”
Also involved in the campaign is Sgt. Rob Ruiters, national criminal interdiction coordinator for the RCMP. The RCMP’s Pipeline/Convoy problem is designed to make police officers more aware of travelling criminals on Canadian highways. Ruiters says officers are being taught to treat each traffic stop as a unique encounter and to look for anomalies that might be present when illicit drugs or stolen property are being moved.
“We know that 99% of truckers are good people doing good things, but we also know that organized crime and other criminal groups will utilize that as an opportunity to get in and fit in with the other companies,” Ruiters says. “There are hundreds and hundreds of tonnes of contraband going back and forth across this country regularly.”
Petroschke says awareness of the issue is important, but even more important is getting the industry to work together to find a solution.
“We can’t do this alone. We have to all work together to solve a common problem. One company acting independently on its own isn’t going to get very far,” Petroschke said, noting that several other trucking companies are planning on starting similar initiatives.
Transportation-related crime such as cargo theft, transportation of contraband or national security concerns cost the trucking industry billions of dollars annually.