Number of cargo theft incidents drops in first quarter

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cargo theftA total of 188 cargo theft incidents were reported and recorded in the first three months of 2013, according to FreightWatch International. The number constitutes a 25 percent drop in cargo thefts from the previous quarter — the last three months in 2012.

Moreover, the average value of each load stolen dropped 21 percent to $141, 266. The drop, however, is typical after a high-volume fourth quarter, says FreightWatch.

Food and drink loads constituted nearly one-quarter of all loads stolen in the quarter, with 46 thefts. Rounding out the top five types of loads were pharmaceuticals (13 percent, 24 thefts), electronics (12 percent, 22 thefts), metals (10 percent) and alcohol (8 percent).

Nearly half of the incidents occurred in just three states — Florida, Texas and Georgia — with Florida and Texas each seeing 31 thefts. Georgia reported 19 incidents (10 percent) and California and New Jersey reported 17 thefts and 10 thefts, respectively.

Per usual, trailer theft constituted the majority of thefts (61 percent), while deceptive pickups — a form of identity theft — made up about 10 percent of thefts. Violent attempts like hijacking remain a small percentage.