Keep Your Company's Trucks and Cargo Safe from Terrorists

The US Transportation Security Administration is warning trucking companies about the use of stolen trucks as low-tech weapons

Posted by Timothy Dimoff in on July 11th, 2017

Terrorists seem to continually find new ways to act on their mission to hurt, maim, kill and destroy. One of their more recent methods is related to driving.

Unfortunately, we are vulnerable to these types of terrorist attacks both at our business, as well as while our trucks are on the road. Imagine the chaos and loss that can occur if your trucks are attacked and your cargo and equipment taken.


Cargo Theft and Vehicle-Ramming

Cargo theft has become increasingly appealing to criminals. This is especially a concern when transporting hazardous materials.

Vehicle-ramming is a form of attack in which a perpetrator deliberately aims a motor vehicle at a target with the intent to inflict fatal injuries or significant property damage by striking with concussive force.

And, no community, large or small, rural or urban, is immune to attacks of this kind by organized or by “lone wolf” terrorists.


Trucks as Low-Tech Weapons

Each year there are at least 300 million hazmat shipments in the US alone, with an estimated 800,000 of them moving daily, 94% via truck.
Recently, The United States Transportation Security Administration issued a new security alert warning the nation’s trucking companies and their drivers about the use of stolen trucks as low-tech methods of attack.


How Common is Vehicle-Ramming?

It focuses on the current threat landscape and points out that from 2014 to date terrorists have carried out 17 known vehicle-ramming attacks worldwide, resulting in 173 fatalities and 667 injuries.

Each year there are at least 300 million hazmat shipments totalling nearly 3.2 billion tons in the United States alone, with an estimated 800,000 of them moving daily, 94 percent via truck.

There has been great concern over the fact that suspected terrorists were able to obtain commercial driver’s licenses with a hazmat endorsement.


Improving the Safety of Trucks

The US government is taking steps to help ensure the safety of trucks including:

  • Building redundancy into the transportation system to ensure the continued flow of commerce.
  • Prioritizing federal investments to make sure highways that are most critical to our military and our economy are adequately funded.
  • Authorizing motor carrier access to national crime information databases for criminal background checks on current or prospective employees.
  • Increasing efficiency of security measures at U.S. borders.
  • Appointing more federal personnel dedicated to commercial driver’s license program evaluation.
  • Rejecting legislation that might curtail the use of Social Security numbers as personal identifiers on driver’s licenses.
  • The US Department of Transportation will soon use the FBI’s fingerprint database to identify possible security risks among people seeking licenses to haul hazardous materials.


Preventing Truck Attacks

Make sure your drivers are aware of the See Something, Say Something campaign.

So what can you, as a business owner do to help?

  • Keep informed on new preventative measures, such as new security systems preventing unauthorized movement of freight. For example, using ID codes to make sure a truck cannot be moved when idling if an invalid ID code is entered.
  • Make sure your drivers are aware of the “See Something, Say Something” campaign.
  • Make sure your drivers are alert to potential threats and that they report suspicious activities to appropriate authorities.

Taking these steps can go a long way to preventing trucking attacks.

Timothy Dimoff
Timothy Dimoff

President, SACS Consulting & Investigative Services

Timothy A. Dimoff, CPP, president of SACS Consulting & Investigative Services, Inc., is a speaker, trainer and author and a leading authority in high-risk workplace and human resource security and crime issues.
He is a Certified Protection Professional; a certified legal expert in corporate security procedures and training; a member of the Ohio and International Narcotic Associations; the Ohio and National Societies for Human Resource Managers; and the American Society for Industrial Security. He holds a B.S. in Sociology, with an emphasis in criminology, from Dennison University.

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