A study conducted by Censuswide has revealed stolen vehicles or equipment costs fleet-based businesses an average of £12,250 each year.

The cost is even higher for businesses with more than 100 vehicles, with the data suggesting larger fleets lose, on average, £21,000 each year. Potential contributors to the problem are a lack of tracking or inability to immobilise vehicles.

The research was made up of interviews held with 409 fleet decision-makers that operate fleets of between three and 500 vehicles. It revealed two in five (40%) fleets had vehicles stolen that could not be recovered in the past year, while 45% experienced theft of assets such as tools, equipment, IT, or cargo.

Almost two thirds (62%) of fleet-based businesses with more than 100 vehicles experienced a theft in which vehicles or assets were unable to be recovered in the past 12 months. On average, fleets of this size are losing 1.92 vehicles per year.

The report found that GPS asset tracking devices, which can play a significant role in helping to recover stolen assets, are used in only half (52%) of fleet vehicles.

Even fewer vehicles were shown to use GPS tracking on portable assets such as IT equipment and tools (32%), construction equipment (24%) and on cargo pallets (21%).

However, new technologies that help track and immobilise assets more effectively are becoming more popular. Questions around these developments were covered in the questions.

Close to a third (31%) of fleet-based businesses now use dashcams as a tool to assist with these efforts. Dashcams can act as a deterrent and corroborate insurance claims in the event of a vehicle being stolen. Fleet managers can see in-cab footage too.

Many platforms also now offer immobilisation functionalities, which fleet managers can use to remotely shut down vehicles and prevent unauthorised use.

Separate research published earlier this year, revealed that more cars were stolen and recovered in London than in any other region across 2020. Analysis of data also showed another annual increase in keyless car thefts, which now stand at an all-time high of 93%.