Car theft is a common occurrence in Australia, motivated mostly by the scrap racket and the black market trade in car parts. Australian rental car companies are prime targets with one company reporting the loss of as many as 40 vehicles a year from one of its sites.

Most thefts occur in parking areas that have either not been secured with access control technologies or lack supervision. While pure economics drive these deficiencies, rental companies often fail to realise that the cost of vehicle repairs, replacement and loss of future rental earnings far outweigh the cost of securing their cars.

Vehicle theft can be prevented by posting security guards at gated entrances and exit lanes to control the movement of vehicles within the parking area. Some companies have implemented automated vehicle access control technologies for better efficiency and cost effectiveness.

For example, several airport car rental operators have taken tough measures to discourage even the most brazen thieves from stealing parked vehicles. Using a combination of boom gates and tyre spikes in two vulnerable locations – the vehicle storage carpark and car detailing area as well as the airport car pickup exit – companies are taking control of the security of their vehicles.

In the vehicle storage carpark and car detailing area, boom gates and tyre spikes are controlled by the operators’ staff using remote radio transmitters. At the airport car pickup exit, the rental car pickup process involves the customer collecting the car from the vehicle bay and driving to the exit where the attendant checks the driver’s licence and vehicle details. On confirmation that the driver is the renter and the correct car has been collected, the attendant uses a transmitter to lower the tyre spikes completely, which in turn, automatically raise the boom pole.

Rotech Group Pty Ltd has been supplying tyre spikes and boom gate combos for Australian rental car operators since 2012. These solutions have been extremely effective in protecting vehicles against theft and offer a highly efficient method of controlling vehicle access to all types of premises.

Sentinel CW tyre spikes

Designed as high security, high volume, fast acting barriers, these tyre spikes feature a high-torque DC motor; efficient and reliable operation for up to 2,000 cycles a day; heavy duty galvanised steel construction, built to disable even heavy vehicles such as 20-tonne trucks; multiple interlocks to stop spikes rising out of sequence; and a high-vis bright yellow finish providing increased safety.

Rotech Pedestrian Safety Recommendation:

Though Rotech’s tyre spikes have been designed for high visibility, additional safety measures are required if the area where the spikes are installed, also allows pedestrian traffic.

When considering the use of tyre spikes and boom gates to manage vehicle access, Rotech strongly recommends installing a fully integrated boom gate/tyre spikes control system, which incorporates traffic lights, safety beams, flashing lights and sirens to alert pedestrians that they are entering a dangerous zone.