CCJ Daily Dispatch, Nov. 24: Cargo theft reports ticked up in third quarter year-over-year

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Trucking news and briefs for Tuesday, Nov. 24, 2020:

Cargo theft reports up 7% year-over-year
According to the 2020 third-quarter cargo theft trend data released by cargo theft recording firm SensiGuard, cargo theft volumes increased by 7% when compared to the third quarter in 2019. The firm’s data is based on reports from law enforcement, insurance companies and more, and does not represent 100% of all theft activity.

During the third quarter, SensiGuard recorded a total of 194 thefts in the United States – 63 in July, 62 in August and 69 in September. The average loss value per incident during the quarter was $152,373. The loss value is within 1% of 2019’s third quarter, the firm adds.

Of note, despite the year-over-year decrease, the third-quarter numbers represent an 18% decrease in volume and a 28% decrease in value when compared to 2020’s second quarter.

Home and garden items were the most stolen products in the third quarter, accounting for 26% of total thefts. Appliances and cleaning supplies were at the top of most targeted home and garden items, SensiGuard says.

Texas topped the list of cargo theft by state in the third quarter, accounting for 20% of total thefts in the quarter, followed by California (14%), Florida (11%), Georgia (11%) and Illinois (7%).

Ag, livestock definitions take effect Dec. 9
The DOT’s updated definitions for agricultural commodity and livestock as they pertain to the hours of service regulations will take effect Dec. 9.

As reported last week, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is clarifying the definitions of the terms “any agricultural commodity,” “livestock,” and “non-processed food,” as they are used in the definition of “agricultural commodity” for HOS regs.

Federal Register notice published Tuesday officially sets the date that the new definitions in the interim final rule take effect, and also opens a comment period for a month, through Dec. 24. Specifically, FMCSA is asking for public comment on the revised definitions above, including answers to the following questions:

  1. Will the clarifications of the terms “any agricultural commodity,” “non-processed food,” and “livestock” result in more consistent application of the HOS exemptions? Why or why not?
  2. Will the clarifications impact the number of drivers who would use the exemptions? If so, how and to what extent? For example, how, if at all, will including all living animals cultivated, grown, or raised for commercial purposes, including aquatic animals, within the definition of “livestock” impact the number of drivers?
  3. Will any of the clarifications result in higher or lower costs for the transportation of agricultural commodities and livestock?
  4. Will any of the clarifications result in other benefits to stakeholders, including consumers and State enforcement personnel?

RLS Logistics expanding direct-to-consumer service to customers
The New Jersey-headquartered RLS Logistics third-party logistics provider announced a service expansion in Terrell, Texas, to handle temperature-controlled direct to consumer (D2C) fulfillment. The move expands the RLS footprint for already-existing refrigerated services, enhancing other capabilities in the region.

The location marks makes for the 3PL’s third strategic fulfillment location for customers, said Ken Johnson, the company’s Chief Operating Officer for the warehousing group — allowing the company to reach most destinations within the U.S. within two days, around a fourth in a single day.

PCS Software acquires UltraShipTMS
PCS Software announced it was acquired UltraShipTMS to build on PCS’ existing transportation logistics management and fleet management capabilities.

UltraShipTMS offers cloud supply chain management technologies and services to leading shippers in food production, packaging, manufacturing, retail and other industries.

PCS says part of its goal with the acquisition is to create one integrated shipper and carrier platform to offer users an end-to-end, unified interface for shipping and carrying visibility management.

“UltraShipTMS is a force in the TMS industry and is known for its quality supply chain and logistics technology solutions,” said Chris Poelma, CEO and board director at PCS Software. “The company has seen tremendous growth over the last few years and has a stronghold among agricultural producers and food shippers. This will complement our customer base and allow PCS to extend its footprint.”