With fuel prices at close to all-time highs in California and Arizona markets, it’s no surprise that fleet managers are dealing with increased incidents of gas theft. One small business owner came in and discovered five of her trucks had their gas tanks drilled and siphoned—costing her both the value of the lost fuel and downtime for repairs to her trucks’ tanks.

The process thieves are using is anything but technologically advanced. They duck under the trucks and use simple rechargeable electric drills to pierce the tanks and drain fuel into a large refill canister—making the process far more efficient than lugging a siphon and manually pulling the gas through the fill opening. The damage and downtime from putting a hole in a tank are far more painful than the cost of the lost fuel. At one lot in Sacramento, California, a thief drilled nine cars over the course of one night and did $1,500 in damage. The drill move also evades basic protection like fuel cap locks, making technology and surveillance much more effective deterrents.

GPS Trackit’s industry-leading fleet management tools use geolocation and video to not only monitor the location and status of trucks, heavy equipment, and cargo but also build a predictive “information web” around those assets. Fleet managers can better assess risks based on location, track assets that have moved from their expected location, and support law enforcement with a trove of video and GPS evidence.

Fleet managers can also advertise the protected status of their trucks with signage both in the lot and on the vehicles indicating they’re monitored with both video and geolocation. In many cases, it means thieves move on to an easier—and unprotected—target.