(WETM)- 18 news has recently reported about tractor trailers being stolen in the Twin Tiers.
We spoke with Ron Melancon the president of stolentrailers.org, and asked him to explain how he got started in this and what he has done thus far.
“I created a website called stolen trailers and keywords. Because I wanted to prove to the government that this is a pressing issue at that time it wasn’t big. But now every week now over 1500 trailers nationwide are being stolen,” says Melancon.
So what’s the issue? Melancon says, “we have 14 states where you don’t register a trailer. How do you find who owned the trailer if you don’t register a trailer? You can steal your own trailer, and call it a homemade trailer. You can get a new VIN number and new license plate. Our DMV will issue people new VIN numbers and new license plates and new titles on stolen property because you don’t have to prove to anyone you’ve built that homemade.”
We asked Melancon, why do you think people are stealing trailers? What is the appeal to it? He says, “It’s faster than robbing a bank and more profitable because thieves know this stuff inside of it. If the average contents of a trailer with DJ equipment, landscaping equipment is over $20,000 and I can take it in 30 seconds and in the middle of the night. What do you think is more profitable to do?”
Melancon has dedicated years to research and investigation, and has a solution he has proposed to lawmakers.
“I want to be the president of the national stolen trailer crime bureau….Why isn’t anyone no insurance company nobody wanting to have a national database for stolen trailers,” says Melancon.
His tip for viewers at home who own trailers and want to protect themselves is “put your old iPhone in the trailer. Download life 360. It’s free. You can track your trailer if it’s stolen.”