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NER warns against equipment theft over Memorial Day weekend

By Stephen Elliott

May 28, 2023

NER logoThe National Equipment Register (NER) is encouraging those in the equipment and event rental industry to be vigilant against theft during the Memorial Day weekend. The Memorial Day holiday is one of the most active equipment theft periods nationwide as summer demand for equipment ramps up. 

According to the NER, worksite and dealer yard burglaries over the holiday are always an issue. Machine thefts from storage locations including contractor’s shop yards and farm outbuildings are also prevalent. 

The NER says equipment rental fraud and conversion thefts have plagued the industry since a surge in 2018. NER anticipates that fraudsters and “smash and grab” thieves will be active throughout the spring, particularly leading into and over the summer holiday weekends.  

The top three targeted states in the past five years from the Thursday before Memorial Day to the Wednesday after have been Texas, Florida and California with a combined total loss value of $9.6 million. The top targeted equipment types stolen includes mowers, skid steers and utility vehicles. During that time, 531 equipment theft incidents have been reported.  

NER offers numerous security tips and best practices, including: 

  • Ensure alarms and lighting are all operating properly. A high number of false alarms may be a test of your responsiveness.
  • Test cameras in daylight and after dark to confirm you capture usable images of license plates, faces and vehicles. 
  • Don’t assume fences and gates provide a complete barrier to adjoining businesses and vacant land. Walk your fence line to be sure everything is intact. Thieves have partially cut fence posts or stack materials near a wall in preparation.  

Click here for NER’s full list of tips and best practices. 

To report any theft or fraud, go to NER online, or email NER at with as little as the machine make, model and serial number, and the date and location of theft, and NER will enter it for you.