GPS Tracking, Theft Recovery and the Amazing Stories Behind It

Back before Rhino Fleet Tracking was what it is today, I thought the majority of our products would identify people speeding or just lounging when they really should be working. What I didn’t foresee was the oddities that came from our GPS tracking solutions.

Here are my top 5 favorite theft recovery stories:

Defense Contractor ALMOST lost a Trailer

One asset category we regularly track is semi trailers. The normal use is to know where the semi trailers are located for easily identifying maintenance issues, but more importantly to manage routes to their pick-ups and drop offs. One of our customers happened to be a major defense contractor. They used our trailer tracking devices and tracking software in order to keep an eye on their missile transportation.

One day this customer gave us a call, because of one his shipments looked to be in the neighboring state rather than in the state it should have been. Since their business requires transporting missiles to the military or intelligence department of government, you can understand the client’s concern.

Turns out, the driver also had a working contract with Pepsi Co and was using the trailer, stolen from a defense contractor, to haul Pepsi products during his shift. By adjusting the pings from the asset tracking device to our tracking software, we were able to lead the police to the exact bay at the bottling company.

It’s safe to say that guy, or better yet, thief, wasn’t welcome to stay on with the company after that incident.

Pimping Out a Stolen Bus

Earlier this year I visited a customer who provides limousine and bus services. When visiting with the HR Director, she said, “I have to tell you my favorite Rhino Fleet Tracking story.”

She said, “We had a driver that we knew was bad news, but we never found any offenses that could warrant legal termination. Until one night when we noticed a vehicle was out of the yard after hours.”

Stop sign on side on yellow School Bus

“We started tracking the vehicle and got the police involved. The police followed the vehicle and discovered a prostitute was being shuttled in our vehicle around town. Johns were being picked up and serviced in our vehicle. The police apprehended him and we fired him. And we cleaned our vehicle very thoroughly!”

I was blown away and said, “So, he did all of this in one or your limousines?” She replied, “No, he did this in one of our yellow school buses!”

Theft Recovery – 1 Unruly Employee – 0

I know where you can get a real good deal on a dishwasher…

Several months ago we received a call from one of our home building clients out of New York. This particular builder was regularly losing home appliances in the homes he was selling-many that were near closing for new owners. Understandably so, the client didn’t want to keep paying to replace the stolen appliances

So, together, we helped them come up with a plan of theft prevention, and recovery, if needed. By utilizing easily, hidden asset trackers and our tracking software, we knew we could catch any thief in the act, if they so dared try again.

A few weeks later, we got a call. The customer’s house appliances had once again been stolen, and they needed our assistance locating it. By adjusting the ping settings on the tracking device, we were able to quickly track down the stolen appliances. Not surprisingly, the customers’ dishwasher showed up at a used appliance store a few miles away.

Case solved in a matter of hours.

Let’s go clothes shopping – in a parking lot?

What’s great about Rhino Fleet Tracking is we truly offer customized tracking for an array of applications. But even so, I thought it was a little odd when one of my salesman told me he facilitated a tracking solution for a company that manages clothing donation bins.

“Surely, no one would steal one of those!” I said this multiple times.

Well, I was wrong. Unfortunately, there were multiple instances where he had to utilize his tracking solution for recovery purposes. Stealing from donation bins, just terrible! Next, you’d think we have to track babies’ candy.

Nike, just do it! Don’t steal it.

This particular heist is straight out of a movie and, actually, not uncommon.

Our customer was transporting Nike shoes, an easy-to-sell item that is regularly stolen. Clearly an inside job, the trailer was conveniently disconnected at a truck stop where the thieves picked it up. What they didn’t know was that there were multiple asset trackers on board.

By using our fleet tracking app, they lead the police exactly to the scene of the crime. BUSTED!

There are more stories to share and some we just can’t for multiple reasons. If you think it won’t be stolen, you might be surprised.


Steven Van Ooyen, Chief Executive Officer