Plant thieves are switching their attention to smaller equipment such as rollers, dumpers and mini excavators as larger machines become increasingly difficult to steal and transport.
A review of stolen machinery by equipment tracking specialist AMI Group has identified rollers as a ‘hot’ target for theft from construction sites and customer depots.
Peter Stockton, AMI’s operations director, said: “Thieves may automatically presume that rollers don’t have a tracking device fitted so it is an easier option than larger kit which is more likely to have telematics fitted and overt property marking such as CESAR (The Construction & Agricultural Equipment Security and Registration Scheme).”
The company’s plant theft review matches the findings in the latest report by the Plant & Agricultural National Intelligence Unit which found steady increases in the theft of tandem rollers, dumpers trucks and minis.
To tackle the increasing sophistication of criminals, AMI has developed what it claims are the smallest, most covert devices in the industry, making them more difficult for thieves to locate. As well as helping customers recover their plant, the devices have also helped the to recover thousands of pounds of construction equipment not protected by a deterrent.
In a recent example, a one-tonne Terex dumper worth £15,000 was retrieved in Cheshire and the operation also led police to several other items including Bobcat and Volvo excavators and a trailer stored in an isolated rural area. The haul was valued at more than £100,000 and was retrieved following an operation involving AMI, a major plant hirer and two police forces.
AMI, which protects £245m worth of customers’ assets across the UK, offers a number of tracking and fleet management systems for plant and vehicles. Among the latest is a self-contained, battery-operated device using GPS, GSM and RF technology.
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Article posted 29/5/2016