More than half of container thefts occur with contractors

4 April 2012

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4 April 2012 | Adam Leach

Buyers should put subcontractors used by logistics suppliers under greater scrutiny, as more than half of supply thefts happen when goods are in their possession.

Analysis by transport and logistics insurer TT Club on supply chain related claims found, in value terms, theft was the cause of 29 per cent of claims. Within theft, the research showed that 54 per cent of the overall claims value was a result of “theft in transit” while the goods were in the possession of subcontractors. Thefts when logistics companies themselves had possession of the goods themselves accounted for just 8 per cent.

But the study also showed in relation to thefts from premises, goods are safer when held by contractors, with 12 per cent of the overall value of goods stolen, compared to 13 per cent when on their own sites. A further 7 per cent resulted from stocktaking loss and six per cent as a result of other causes.

“To prevent theft you must know your contractors,” said Laurence Jones, director of global risk assessment at TT Club, in a presentation at a supply chain conference in Hong Kong.

He highlighted the importance of completing pre-employment checks before working with contractors. He also advised buyers to look at how long the contractor has been active, its country of origin and to see if they are affiliated with any trade bodies. He said to reduce the risk of thefts in transit in general, alter routes for regular deliveries.

In January 2012, a report found that container theft in the United States had hit an all time high of 974 thefts.

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