If you’re someone who works in the haulage industry, it’s understandable that the idea of freight crime would be frightening. Whether you’ve experienced it firsthand or have been lucky enough to have only heard the stories, the thought of your vehicle being messed with or stolen from is certainly unsettling.
Fortunately, the Bedfordshire Police are on the case and they’ve come up with a campaign to ease the troubled minds of lorry drivers all over England. Together with the National Vehicle Crime Intelligence Service, they’ve implemented a program that they hope will reduce crime by increasing awareness of Heavy Goods Vehicle (HGV) theft and providing advice for its prevention.
The National Vehicle Crime Intelligence Service
The National Vehicle Crime Intelligence Service, more commonly known as the NaVCIS, is responsible for combating all organised vehicle crime. This means actively fighting against it when an offence has occurred, as well as working to diminish vehicle finance crime and the use of vehicles in illegal activities.
They believe prevention is the best cure – and that’s exactly why they’ve teamed up with the Bedfordshire Police and created a prevention program.
The Program Low Down
Bedfordshire is known for being a hot spot in the haulage industry; hauliers from all over Europe travel its roads daily. Due to the region’s extensive reach to lorry drivers, a freight crime awareness day was hosted. As the name suggests, it focused on informing drivers of the potential dangers and offering advice for how to avoid becoming a target or a victim.
To remain inclusive to both national and international audiences, many aspects of the event were held in multiple languages. For example, the NaVCIS and the police provided leaflets in English, Romanian, Bulgarian, Lithuanian and French, as well as ensuring officers who spoke more than one language were around to give clarification, instruction and advice to any patrons who required it.
During the program, lorry drivers themselves were given a voice. They had the opportunity to fill out a questionnaire about their satisfaction with HGV security and share their experiences surrounding freight theft (whether personal or second hand).
Protecting yourself from organised vehicle offences is all about prevention. Luckily, there are many precautions those in the haulage industry can take to make sure they and their belongings remain safe. One of the most important steps is choosing the right haulage exchange platform. Here are some things lorry drivers should take into consideration:
• Is there a member rating system? If so, how does it work? An arrangement where members are able to publicly rate those they have personally worked with is a great feature some platforms offer. That way, if a haulier is considering working with an individual or business they’ve never encountered before, they can see what feedback has been given in the past. • How strict is the screening process? In this case, the more rigorous the better – it ensures that each applicant is entirely legitimate.
Freight crime doesn’t have to give those in the haulage industry such a fright, with the NaVCIS taking a special interest in HGV crime and the preceding advice.