THE WAR AGAINST CARGO THEFT - Security measures do increase profits

In early 1972, seven interstate carriers in the high crime area of Northern New Jersey
joined in hiring Executive Services of Edison, N.J., security specialists.

The addition of security guards, better lighting, fencing and a comprehensive cargo
accountability system recommended for the terminals cost $67,000, but produced a
$283,516 reduction in claims. Together, the seven terminals increased profits by
$140,000 as a result. At one terminal, a major theft ring of 15 employees was broken

The president of Executive Services and its subsidiary Brooks Protection Systems, Inc.,
Fuller H. Brooks, says:

“The problem with the trucking industry is that companies want to take shortcuts in
paper control which make it easy to steal. Most carriers have a hodgepodge of
procedures put into effect by different individuals when what they need is uniformity
system-wide. At each point, from pickup to delivery, there must be accountability by
drivers and dockmen. On hot freight such as clothing, guns, stereos, liquor or
cigarettes, a supervisor should sign for the freight along with the dockman who checks

“Where employees must park inside the terminal, we recommend they open their trunk
at the gate each day before leaving work. We’ve had no trouble from the union on
this. The gate area must have the highest intensity lighting, and we recommend an 8-
ft chain link fence with 3 ft of barbed wire above that—at a 45 degree angle inward
and outward.

“Any person who’s a management type with common sense can be trained to handle
fleet security. The companies who normally send people to security seminars,
however, are the companies who least need to. The companies with the largest
claims ratios are invariably never seen at these conferences. That’s a real problem.

“By the way, where a load is hijacked at gun point, there’s a good chance the driver is
in on it. He’ll tell the hijackers he’ll be at a particular truck stop at such-and-such a
time, and they’ll be waiting for him. Or he’ll leave the keys in the truck. A lot of theft is
a give-away!”