Over Half-Billion in Cargo Stolen in Canada Since ‘19 


Over the last five years, thefts of trucks, trailers, and cargo loads in Canada have totaled over $531 million in value, of which nearly half ($239 million) went unrecovered, according to the cargo and heavy equipment theft trend report published by Équité Association, Canada’s national authority on insurance crime.’

As reported by Truck News

“Cargo theft is an invisible property crime with a significant impact on our economy and public safety,” said Bryan Gast, vice president of investigative services, Équité Association, in a news release. Insurance and transportation industries, along with the consumers, suffer the consequences of such thefts, paying for increased premiums and higher prices of goods. The health and safety of the general public is also at risk, with perishable goods being stolen, stored incorrectly and placed back on store shelves for purchase, according to the report. 

In 2022, truck, trailer, and cargo load theft reached its highest point since 2019, with an unrecovered theft value of $134.8 million. Last year, there was a 30% decrease in thefts.

 Équité attributes that to the introduction of the special dedicated cargo theft units in Ontario’s law enforcement, as well as the fact that thrives mostly focused on auto thefts in 2023. Next year, however, Équité predicts thieves will return to high activity in the heavy-duty sector.

Just over half of the cargo loads (together with the vehicles transporting it, such as semi-trucks and trailers) stolen between 2019 and 2023 were recovered. Trucks account for the highest recoveries of all (56%), estimated at $180 million in value.

 Meanwhile, cargo loads account for approximately 10% of total recoveries but 19% of overall recovery value. An average value per cargo load recovery is estimated at $114,000.

“There is a vast underground market and cargo loads move quickly, which makes it difficult to recover. Notably, perishable goods have the ability to be moved overnight or the next day,” the report reads. “The theft of perishable goods can be dangerous to the end consumer due to the potential contamination risks involved.”

Of uncovered cargo loads, $53 million worth of goods were from the top three categories by value: mixed loads, with numerous different items inside, at 29.3%; electronics and grocery at 11.18% and 9.18%, respectively.

The biggest hotspots for cargo theft are Ontario and Quebec, with Mississauga, Brampton, Vaughan, Toronto, and Montreal at the top of the list.

Full story here

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