Rollers Identified as Hot Crime Target for Plant Thieves

A review of stolen plant machinery recoveries made by equipment tracking specialist AMI Group has revealed that thieves appear to be specifically targeting rollers for theft.

AMI Group, which protects over £245 million worth of customers assets across the UK with AMI tracking devices, has analysed all of its plant theft recoveries nationwide so far this year and rollers have been identified as a ‘hot’ target for plant criminals.

Peter Stockton, Operations Director at AMI Group said: “The review we carried out revealed a marked increase in the theft of rollers from both construction sites and customer depots. This equipment tends to be smaller in size than much of the larger plant machinery so it is easier for criminals to conceal and transport in a panel van. Thieves may automatically presume that rollers don’t have a tracking device fitted so it is an easier option than larger kit which is more likely to have telematics fitted and overt property marking such as CESAR (The Construction & Agricultural Equipment Security and Registration Scheme).”

AMI Group’s plant theft review also corresponds with the findings in the latest report (Issue 1 2016) issued by PANIU (Plant & Agricultural National Intelligence Unit) which states that ‘PANIU is seeing steady increases in the theft of smaller items. Tandem rollers, dumper trucks and the mini excavator remain popular to the criminal networks.’

In recognition that thieves are becoming increasingly sophisticated, AMI Group has developed the smallest, most covert devices in the industry, making them far more difficult for thieves to locate. As well as helping AMI customers recover their own plant, the company’s devices have also helped the Police to recover thousands of pounds of construction equipment not protected with an anti-theft deterrent.

In a recent example, a £15,000 valued 1 Ton Terex Dumper owned by an AMI customer was successfully retrieved in Cheshire thanks to the AMI anti-theft system, and it also led the Police to several other items of construction machinery stored in an isolated rural area including a Bobcat Excavator, a Trailer and a Volvo Digger. Together, the haul of recovered plant equipment was valued at over £100,000 and was retrieved following a successful cross country operation involving AMI Group, a major plant hire company and both Cheshire and South Yorkshire Police.

AMI Group offers a number of state-of-the-art tracking solutions and fleet management systems for applications including plant and vehicle tracking. One of the company’s latest innovations is the AMI Nexis AT5, a self-contained, battery operated tracking device which utilises state-of-the-art GPS (Global Positioning System), GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications) and RF (Radio Frequency) technology.

Reporting to and visible via the AMI Nexis Software Platform 24/7, the AT5 is lightweight, small sized (21 x 55 x 52mm) and can be concealed almost anywhere on any asset. Via its advanced battery management software, the unit has the capacity to last up to 18 years and it is backed by IP68 waterproof rating, ensuring it is robust and heavily protected. The device has the ability to be traced both outdoors and indoors even in very remote locations. In situations where GPS is unavailable, the device relays GSM cell site positions and the internal RF beacon can be activated to assist in locating stolen assets.