Cargo thieves took a bit of a beating in the second quarter of this year. Data from Jersey City-based CargoNet shows there was a 14% drop in “cargo theft events” from the same period a year ago. But what the crooks did snatch this time around still amounted to tens of millions in losses.
In Q2 2019, CargoNet recorded 308 “supply chain risk events” in the U.S. and Canada. Of those recorded events, 50% involved the theft of one or more vehicles and 55% involved theft or a chain-of-custody issue with a shipment.
As for cargo thefts alone, 150 occurred, which accounted for that 14% decrease from Q2 2018. Yet that smaller number of thefts was still worth big bucks— equaling an estimated total value of $22.9 million.
“In our first-quarter analysis, we noted trailer burglaries were becoming the preferred method of cargo theft,” CargoNet advised in a new release. “This pattern continued in the second quarter. We also noted a resurgence of fictitious pickup activity. Our data shows that fictitious pickups dropped slightly in the second quarter, but were still common. CargoNet recorded fictitious pickup thefts in California, Ontario, Quebec, and Florida in the second quarter.”
The analysis shows that food and beverage products were the most stolen commodity of the second quarter and grew when compared to both second-quarter 2017 and second-quarter 2018. In the food and beverage category, meat products, alcoholic beverages, and nonalcoholic beverages were the most commonly stolen items.
Household items were the second most stolen commodity, but dropped compared to both second-quarter 2017 and second-quarter 2018. Thefts of household cleaning products were the most commonly stolen items in the category, followed by furniture, household paper goods, and major appliances.
CargoNet also found that theft activity was most frequent in California, but recorded thefts there dropped by 28% when compared to second-quarter 2018. Florida and Texas rounded out the top three states. Decreases in thefts were recorded in both these states as well when compared to second-quarter 2018.