Saturday, May 30, 2009
14, May 2009
Alex Rossi, Europe correspondent
Lorry drivers on European roads face the same dangers of hijack as ships off the coast of Somalia, a new report by the EU's police agency suggests.
Facing a similar threat: lorry drivers in Europe and ships off Somalia Organized crime groups see truckers as "easy pickings", said Europol. The cargoes being driven across the continent are often valuable, easy to sell on and not protected. Attacks against haulage firms in the EU are now costing the industry billions of pounds every year. Truckers are said to be most at risk in eastern European destinations like Romania, Hungary and Poland. A recent survey by the International Road Transport Union shows one in six truck drivers has been attacked in the past five years - and one in five of them has been targeted more than once. Road-related cargo crime threatens the principle of free movement of goods across Europe.
Rob Wainwright, Director of Europol
Almost half of the attacks took place in truck parking areas, with the motive in most being to steal the vehicle and its goods. Europol is now warning drivers across the EU to be more vigilant, saying the criminal gangs - known by truckers as "land pirates" - are well organized. The crews often gather intelligence to track the most profitable cargoes - sometimes trailing a truck for up to 200 miles. Often they will mark the vehicle or break a small hole in a rear light, making them easier to shadow.
"Road-related cargo crime threatens the principle of free movement of goods across Europe," said Europol director Rob Wainwright. He also warned national police forces: "Close co-operation and joint efforts are necessary, otherwise we will not be able to match criminals who are both innovative and cruel in their actions and behaviour." Europol says certain cargoes are more at risk than others. There is a rise, for instance, in thieves targeting lorries carrying nickel and copper. Items like alcohol, cigarettes, computers, brand clothing and prescription drugs are also high on the criminals' list.
Like I say, Labour don’t protect us. We should kick out illegal immigrants and move away from the EU. Do you know that over 75% of our laws are from the EU!!! We must act now and never vote Labour or Liberal! EVER!
I get a lot of info from my trade magazines. This story was borrowed from Fleet Owner, a magazine that I thoroughly enjoy. I included a comment (one of many) that shows the mindset of the lorrie drivers of Europe and also in South Africa. I would think it is the thinking of the remaining conservatives in those countries. Those that actually work for a living.
Let me say that I don't think the lorrie drivers are allowed to arm themselves in defense.
Is this a harbinger of things to come? I remember back in the late 70s, during the Carter debacle there were a lot of truck hijackings. In this new "Carter-like" administration will there be a repeat?