Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

In the Van-Guard of Security Security; Flash of Inspiration: Darren Wade and His Portable Alarm System

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

In the Van-Guard of Security Security; Flash of Inspiration: Darren Wade and His Portable Alarm System

Article excerpt

Byline: DAVID WILLIAMS

LONG hours in the sentry box at a south London builders merchant gavesecurity guard Darren Wade plenty of time for reflection. And he came to twoconclusions: First, he was never going to get rich checking "goods out" docketsand searching vans for goods that hadn't been paid for.

Second, he might get rich if he worked out how to beat the tide of thefts fromthe backs of working vans and lorries.

For some people, crime does pay, and around [pounds sterling]150 million of goods go missingfrom the backs of vans each year.

Then, one rainy day as he was waiting to check the next vehicle, it came to hima guaranteed way to build high levels of extra security into the trucks andvans that daily streamed in and out of Travis Perkins.

Now his brainwave could be about to revolutionise the vehicle security industryandhopefullygive Darren a return on more than [pounds sterling]20,000 he has invested in his invention.

"It's a huge problem for fleets and tradesmen who need vans for theirlivelihoods," says Darren, 34, who lives at Edgware Road with his wife and twochildren.

"I looked up the figures and millions of pounds worth of goods go missing fromthe backs of vans a year, including tools and other equipmentit's massive." He says the average theft costs van drivers [pounds sterling]1,750 in lost toolsbut far more when downtime and insurance hikes are included.

His idea was simple enough: a "sleeping" system that would be alerted by anintruder, covertly capture them on film and simultaneously beam the image tothe driver's mobile phone or PDA.

The resulting images could even be used as evidence, later on.

It seemed so simple he couldn't believe no one had come up with the ideabefore. Developing the system, however, proved altogether harder. …

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