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Beware Of Heavy Equipment Theft This Holiday Season

The holiday season is in full swing, and while consumers are busy crossing items off their shopping lists, dealerships, construction sites and other businesses are dealing with a recurring issue – heavy equipment theft.

Just how big of a problem is heavy equipment theft? One company told us they’re experiencing thefts daily at locations across the country.

Holidays = Surging Heavy Equipment Theft

Heavy equipment theft isn’t a new problem, and it occurs year-round. But it spikes during the holidays. According to the National Equipment Register (NER), Thanksgiving kicks off this “not so happy” holiday season.

NER estimates that over the last five years, there has been a rise in heavy equipment theft incidents reported during the Thanksgiving holiday – with losses totaling $3,335,590.

While heavy equipment theft is a nationwide problem, NER data indicates the top three targeted states during the Thanksgiving holiday are:

  • #1: Texas

  • #2: Georgia

  • #3: Louisiana

And, while NER found that heavy equipment theft spikes around the Tuesday before Thanksgiving through the Monday after, their data also indicates another surge takes place around Christmas and New Year’s.

Of the incidents reported over a five-year span, NER found that heavy equipment theft rises between December 20 and January 1, with losses totaling $5,547,000. The top targeted states within this timeframe are very similar:

  • #1: Texas

  • #2: Georgia

  • #3: California

Top Targets

Both sets of NER data from around Thanksgiving and Christmas also show thieves have their sights set on certain locations.

Location Targets

heavy construction

Worksites

Dealerships

Storage Facilities

What exactly are thieves stealing from these locations?

Equipment Targets

Skid Steers

Mowers

all-terrain-vehicle-color-fix

Utility Vehicles

Experience tells us thieves target these specific locations housing these valuable assets for several reasons.

First, many of these businesses lack proper fencing, which makes it easy for criminals to simply drive off or tow away heavy equipment.

And, sometimes, even sites that do have fencing find it isn’t enough. If heavy equipment is placed right up against perimeter fencing, thieves can easily cut through it to get in and out as quickly as possible.

The second part of this theft equation is how these businesses manage master keys.

Many pieces of machinery can be operated by a master key. If thieves get their hands on it, they hold the proverbial “keys to the kingdom” – gaining access to any piece of heavy machinery on your site.

It might not be feasible to create a unique key for every piece of equipment on your site, but you can store the master key in a safe place. And, for an added layer of protection, consider unplugging machines’ batteries every night. 

Put An End to Heavy Equipment Theft With Pro-Vigil

AI Deterrence

One thing is clear, thieves will take advantage of the holiday season when businesses are often understaffed and unwatched for longer periods of time, a problem that’s especially prevalent this year due to nationwide staffing shortages.

And, while heavy equipment theft may spike this time of year, it certainly doesn’t come to a halt on January 1. It’s a problem 365 days of the year, which makes crime deterrence critical, if you want to avoid costly losses and insurance claims.

Pro-Vigil combines the power of Artificial Intelligence (AI) with intelligent surveillance cameras to detect and deter crime at your business.

Pro-Vigil’s AI paired with a team of virtual security guards who monitor your site remotely – around the clock and no matter the time of year – can deploy audio visual deterrents within 24 seconds of a detected intrusion, repelling 97% of intruders before they ever commit a crime.

Keep the holidays happy and don’t fall victim to heavy equipment theft. Contact us today to learn how you can secure your business no matter the season.

 

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