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Protecting Construction Sites from Theft

June 30, 2014
commercial security
Construction sites, including preexisting homes undergoing substantial renovation, are frequent targets for theft and other crimes. This is particularly the case at night on sites where there are no security guards and there is no security system or it is disabled due to the work. The most common problem is loss of property, including tools and raw materials like lumber and metal. This kind of crime does not, however, have to be viewed as a cost of construction, and there are steps that property owners and companies can take to make themselves a less likely target.

Security System or Personnel

If a nighttime security guard is within budget, this is an excellent option because crimes on sites that have manned security are very rare. A traditional security system is generally not effective on a construction site, so do not go to great lengths to install one or ensure the existing system remains intact. There are, however, security system components that can prove very effective as deterrents, such as motion sensors that enable bright lights when motion is detected.

Fences, Signage and Cameras

Fences are also effective in these types of scenarios and are relatively inexpensive. Fences that actually keep people out, however, can be quite expensive. Security-related signage on the property can also have an effect. Such signs are not quite the deterrent they are on the front lawn of an intact house, but they may work, and they cost almost next to nothing to put in place. Vandalism-proof security cameras can also serve as very effective deterrent if positioned properly. In addition, in the event of a crime, the cameras can provide evidence to the police, and that evidence can make it significantly easier to file a claim with an insurance company.

Install a Lock-Down Area

A lock-down area is a space that is very difficult to break into. Nothing is impervious, but an effective lock-down area is so difficult to break into that the criminals will have a difficult time and will have to spend a very long time on the premises, which increases the chances of them being caught. Lock-down areas can be expensive to install, but that investment is well worth it in light of property loss statistics at sites with lockdown areas compared to those that did not have them in place.

Records and Logistics

Whether you’re a homeowner or a business owner, you need to know exactly what resources you have on hand by keeping a detailed record, including serial numbers and receipts, where applicable. Additionally, plan your shipments of raw materials in a way that makes you a less likely target. Receiving all supplies that will be needed for a job at the beginning of the project is a terrible idea. The best way to protect yourself is to receive a daily shipment of only the materials and appliances that will be used that day. That approach can end up costing more over the length of the project, but that added cost is usually significantly less than the average loss would be.