McCormick Tractors To Be Protected By Anit-Theft Registration Scheme

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Farmers and contractors buying a new McCormick tractor in 2010 can enjoy lower insurance premiums and their machines are less likely to be stolen thanks to joining an industry-leading initiative by distributor AgriArgo UK.

From January next year, all new McCormick tractors will be registered with CESAR, the construction and agricultural equipment theft deterrence and vehicle identification scheme, free of charge.

“We’re appalled at the growing number of farm tractor thefts and the cost to owners in terms of inconvenience, distress and rising insurance premiums,” says Ray Spinks, general manager. “So we’re taking the initiative to safeguard our products by registering ownership details of all new McCormick tractors with CESAR.”

This Government-backed national scheme is operated by vehicle identification specialist Datatag. Several construction and plant hire equipment manufacturers already protect their machines through the scheme AgriArgo UK is the first farm equipment supplier to do so.

The move follows the scheme’s recent adoption by AEA, the agricultural equipment industry’s trade organisation.

“The primary objective of the scheme is deterrence,” explains Datatag national sales manager, Chris Harrison. “Making it clear using tamper-evident identification plates that tractors are registered makes them less vulnerable to theft. But if anyone is foolish enough to steal a registered tractor, it is much more likely to be recovered.”

The scheme works by installing several tiny transponders in random locations on the tractor, together with microscopic Datadots that carry a registration number and unique ‘DNA’ code for each tractor. The transponders – each about the size of a grain of rice – carry a multi-digit code that can be read by thousands of scanners issued to police forces and port authorities throughout the UK and Ireland.

Each code relates to an entry on the CESAR register that gives details of the vehicle and legitimate owner this information is available to the police at any time of night or day.

The four identification plates attached to the bodywork and chassis are difficult to alter and impossible to remove without damage thanks to the way the adhesive bonds to the paint so any attempt to get rid of them obviously raises suspicions.

“It’s a tried and tested system that is proven in the construction and plant hire sector,” emphasises Chris Harrison. “In fact, the Plant & Agricultural National Intelligence Unit has confirmed that CESAR-equipped machinery is more than four times less likely to be stolen and the recovery rate is increased six-fold.

“Now that agriculture has become more of a target for vehicle thefts,” he adds, “the time is right for the scheme’s more widespread uptake in the farming industry.”

Registering all new Landini tractors will give the scheme added impetus, believes Ray Spinks of AgriArgo UK.

“That’s why we decided to make it standard – there is no initial or ongoing cost to the buyer or supplying dealer,” he emphasises.

The most tangible benefit for anyone buying a new McCormick tractor next year is the prospect of cheaper theft insurance. NFU Mutual, which writes the majority of farm insurance policies, says it will apply a 12.5% discount after other adjustments, which on a £450 premium, represents a saving of £56 per tractor.

“On top of that, CESAR-registered tractors are less likely to be targeted by thieves,” adds Ray Spinks. “Our customers have enough on their plate without the cost and inconvenience of having their tractors stolen.”

Date Created: 09/11/2009

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