How to Prevent Theft of Commercial Trucks and Trailers

Commercial trucks and trailers are the top targets of vehicle thieves. When they are stolen, your company may experience revenue loss, higher insurance premiums, parts shortages, business interruptions, workers' compensation claims, and angry customers. In addition, if a truck or trailer is violently hijacked, an operator may be traumatized, injured, or killed. The following explains how to prevent theft of commercial trucks and trailers.


  1. Image titled Prevent Theft of Commercial Trucks and Trailers Step 1
    Follow routine safety measures.
    • Put the most valuable cargo in the front of the trailer to make it less accessible to thieves.
    • Use cargo locking doors and keep them locked.
    • Do not permit unauthorized passengers, such as hitchhikers, to enter the vehicle.
    • Park in an attended lot. If this is not possible, park in a well-lighted, fenced lot that is visible from the street.
    • Do not leave spare keys in or under the vehicle.
    • Do not put a tag on the key-ring that directly identifies the vehicle. A criminal could use this to steal the vehicle.
    • Do not leave the windows open when the truck is unattended.
    • King-pin locks should be used on parked trailers. These are sleeves that are placed on a trailer's king-pin, then secured when it is not attached to a truck.
  2. Image titled Prevent Theft of Commercial Trucks and Trailers Step 2
    Install warning and anti-theft devices.
    • These include alarms and wheel locks.
    • Some thieves will be discouraged by such devices.
    • These will only slow a determined thief down. It is best to use other means of theft prevention as well.
  3. Image titled Prevent Theft of Commercial Trucks and Trailers Step 3
    Install immobilizing devices.
    • These disable vital automotive functions and prevent the engine from being restarted until a hidden switch is activated.
    • These should be used along with the other mentioned security tips, as a disabled vehicle can still be towed away.
  4. Image titled Prevent Theft of Commercial Trucks and Trailers Step 4
    Install tracking devices.
    • Global Positioning System (GPS)devices are commonly used to track the locations of trucks and trailers.
  5. Image titled Prevent Theft of Commercial Trucks and Trailers Step 5
    Ensure that the operators are fully trained on the appropriate safety measures.
    • Instruct them to always drive with the doors locked.
    • Tell them that, when stopped in traffic, they should leave room to escape in case of an emergency.
    • Instruct them to drive on major roadways as much as possible.
    • Instruct them not to deviate from the scheduled route.
    • Tell them to choose restaurants and rest areas that are in well-lighted, commonly traveled areas.
    • Instruct them to make sure the truck is properly maintained.
    • Instruct operators to be cautious when a stranger flags them down or asks for directions. Tell them to keep a radio or mobile phone handy to offer help without getting out of the vehicle or to call for help.


  • A properly maintained truck will reduce the chances of a break-down. This will help keep the operator, equipment, and cargo safe from thieves.
  • An alarm will alert others nearby if a theft is in progress.
  • Your company and/or the police can use a GPS system to locate a stolen truck and trailer, determine which direction it is traveling, and give the speed of the vehicle. Also, it can be used for ordinary business reasons, such as monitoring, dispatching, and routing.

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Categories: Trucks