It’s no surprise that cargo thefts continue to plague the industry as the top crime-related activity for the past decade. Just in the first quarter of 2016, FreightWatch recorded a total of 221 thefts, up 8 percent from the previous quarter, with an average loss value per theft of $112,467.
Of the 221 incidents recorded, 66 occurred in January, 90 in February and 65 in March.
Food and drinks continued to be the most stolen product type in the quarter, accounting for 20 percent of total thefts. Home and garden ranked second as the most stolen cargo at 14 percent of the total.
FreightWatch noted “a dramatic increase” in the theft of building and industrial products, a 263 percent increase over the first quarter in 2015, due largely to states where the housing and commercial real estate market is rapidly growing, most notably Texas.
In 2016’s first quarter, California tallied the most thefts with 21 percent of all recorded thefts, which represented a 42 percent increase over 2015’s first quarter. Texas ranked second with 15 percent of all thefts, followed by Florida with 14 percent. Additionally, Alabama saw the biggest increase year over year in thefts, a 600 percent increase – 43 percent of which were building and industrial products.
Although food and drink contributed to the most thefts, it remained one of the lowest total value lost at $70,000. Clothing and shoe theft averaged $390,000 total value lost, the highest amount of all product types – more than doubling the electronics, in second place at a $175,000 loss.
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