AMI’s Latest Tactic Against Plant Theft

Plant security specialist AMI Group announces the launch of the latest weapon in the fight against plant and machinery theft. n recent years, major advances have been made with regards to reducing the risk of plant theft. Thousands of machines are now protected by CESAR (Construction & Agricultural Equipment Security and Registration Scheme) marking and this has no doubt had a positive influence.

However, the fact remains that plant theft is still a major problem for plant hirers, contractors and other owners of plant machinery.

Estimates indicate that UK construction is now losing over £800 million a year as a result of the theft of plant equipment

It is not only the cost of the actual stolen plant that plant hirers or owners have to take into account, there is a great deal of inconvenience to consider, as well as additional costs, including plant replacement and increased insurance premiums.

Criminals are attracted to plant because it traditionally has very low recovery rates and they perceive it as a high profit, low risk activity. Less than 10 per cent of stolen plant is recovered, compared to motor vehicles which have a recovery rate of up to 60 per cent.

According to a report issued last year by PANIU (Plant & Agricultural National Intelligence Unit), there was a 67 per cent increase in the theft of dumpers, an 18 per cent increase in rollers and a huge 165 per cent increase in the theft of excavators in the period from January-March 2016.

Back in 2004, AMI Group recognised the rising problem of plant theft and established its business based on the concept of devising effective and cost-efficient plant tracking and security solutions.

Now, over £245 million of customer assets are protected with its tracking systems and the company has developed the smallest, most covert devices in the industry, making them far more difficult for thieves to locate.

There has been tremendous progress and evolution of the plant tracking market and Peter Stockton, Operations Director of AMI Group, says that customers are now seeking complete integrated tracking solutions offering much more than just theft protection. Hirers are being told that their plant has to be protected, yet they are facing budgetary constraints.

This had led to the development of Asset+ which essentially combines two tracking systems in one, comprising a self-contained, covertly installed GPS wireless system combined with a wired-in GPS fleet management system.

With an industry-leading 20-year battery life, Asset+ can be used to rapidly track, trace and recover equipment in the unfortunate event of it being stolen, whilst providing a wealth of information about machine or usage and status.

Peter Stockton said: “We are very excited to launch Asset+ as several of our customers were seeking the ultimate, covertly installed tracking system that could offer protection against theft whilst providing a facility to allow them control and visibility over their fleets of equipment.

“Asset+ offers a complete, integrated solution rather than just theft protection, with functionality such as telemetry to monitor machine usage and status, tracking its location and reporting unauthorised usage.

“It’s the most robust and empowering tracking system we’ve launched in our history and it can also be used to enhance Health and Safety, monitor operational performance and improve productivity.

“For instance, the telematics allows online real-time monitoring and management of fuel consumption, performance statistics and servicing schedules, plus geofencing of equipment.

“With the dual protection of two tracking systems, in the very unlikely event that one tracking device is removed by thieves, the equipment can be traced by the second tracking system,” he continued.

The system can reduce insurance premiums significantly, and provides the ability for organisations to protect and monitor assets for 20 years.

Nationally, the recovery rate of stolen plant equipment is just 10 per cent but this increases to almost 100 per cent with Asset+ and it can also be used in conjunction with the AMI Nexis web-based software portal, which offers instant online access via computers, smart phones or any other mobile device.

At the click of a button, users can quickly locate and distinguish between different types of assets, such as excavators and rollers.

High tech features give organisations full control and visibility of their plant fleets. A timeline feature allows users to see a quick snapshot of each asset’s activity over the last 24 hours, allowing rapid identification of any assets being used outside working hours or over the weekend.

The hours usage widget enables users to identify the utilisation of plant equipment or other assets. This enables customers to identify under-use or over-use of plant and help ensure accurate charging for plant use. The web portal can also be used to ensure legal compliance or to assist with Environmental, Health or Safety requirements.

The technological innovations of AMI Group have led to the accolade of being named ‘Best for After-Theft Recovery Technology and Recognised Leaders in Plant Security Systems – UK’ as part of the esteemed 2016 Technology Innovator Awards.