TRACER has high recovery rates for 2014

By Tyson Fisher, Land Line staff writer | 12/30/2014

Every time an OOIDA member reports a theft of a tractor or trailer, the Association’s TRACER Alert kicks into action and releases an alert to notify professional drivers. Year-end TRACER stats are in, and it looks like the system has been an effective tool in 2014 for assisting in equipment recovery.

The Transportation Alert Communication and Emergency Response program was launched in 2009 by OOIDA. The program is a two-way communication system that sends alerts to members and coordinates information received from trucking members.

Members can sign up to receive text messages and email alerts for truck thefts and missing persons. The alerts are also reported by Land Line in the daily online news and on “Land Line Now” – OOIDA’s daily satellite radio show on Sirius XM.

According to Doug Morris, OOIDA’s Director of Security Operations, in the past 12 months, OOIDA members reported 47 truck tractors stolen. Of those, 17 were recovered, a rate of 36 percent. A total of 34 trailers were stolen with 11 of those being recovered, a rate of 32 percent.

Morris says recovery rates for heavy trucks and trailers typically average between 13 and 20 percent. TRACER has recovered both at rates higher than 30 percent, making the system “very successful.”

In addition to tractor and trailer thefts, cargo thefts are also reported. Five cargo thefts were reported with two being recovered, a recovery rate of 40 percent. Recovery rates for cargo thefts typically average in the single digits, as low as 2 percent.

According to FBI statistics, 15.2 percent of motor vehicle thefts in the United States involved trucks and buses in 2013, a 2.3 percent decrease from the previous year. The Northeast region had a lower rate, with 4.4 percent of vehicles stolen in that region involving trucks and buses. At a rate of 19.8 percent, the South region had the highest percentage of trucks and buses stolen.

Based on a National Insurance Crime Bureau 2013 Heavy Equipment Theft Report, only 21 percent of stolen heavy equipment was recovered in 2013. Nearly $10 million worth of items was recovered. States with the highest equipment theft include Texas, North Carolina, Florida and California. Thefts typically go up during the warmer months, with July and August experiencing the most and December and February experiencing the least.

Truckers may call the TRACER hotline at 866-950-2291 or visit to get the latest advisory or if they have information to report about stolen cargo or missing persons, etc.

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