Digging Deeper into Construction Theft
The construction industry continues to be easy prey for opportunistic thieves. Despite warnings and growing crime rates, owners of construction sites and tradesmen leave themselves vulnerable as they do not do enough to protect their businesses. A survey conducted by the Chartered Institute of Building revealed that 92% of respondents were directly affected by petty crime, with 21% stating that their construction sites were robbed on a weekly basis. There’s no doubt about it: theft is an on-going issue within the industry, and it continues to increase in its likelihood.
So what’s the cost?
Last year, theft and vandalism within the UK’s construction industry cost the sector over £800 million, a conservative figure considering that some crimes go unreported. Let’s be clear here, this is the cost of replacing missing equipment, from heavy duty machinery to backhoe loaders and also factors in the long-term costs. When contractors are hit by theft it’s not just new equipment that they need to pay for. There’s the cost of hiring new equipment in the interim so that they can continue with their work and there is also the additional increase in insurance premiums.
Why is the construction industry a target?
The main issue comes down to security. Security measures are imperative on building plant in particular. Simply removing keys from ignitions and using padlocks and chains is not enough to keep the thieves at bay. So what other measures can be taken?
- Implementing controlled entry and exit systems. This way you have a clear view of who is entering the site, from in-house staff members to external contractors.
- Investing in staff training to ensure working practices aim to secure on-site vehicles and machinery. If site staff are aware of risks and dangers more will be done to minimise theft.
- Purchasing site security barriers from a reputable security company to reduce the ‘openness’ of your site.
- Investing in deterrents such as CCTV and bright lightning so that thieves struggle to conceal their identity.
- Investing in wider security such as immobilisers and tracking systems.
The above deterrents and security measures may seem obvious, so why are they not being implemented?
Extra security boasts an additional price tag and unfortunately, some construction managers decide to take a risk and choose not to invest in such measures.
An insecure building site is a sure way to attract opportunists. But why are thieves so eager to steal equipment on building sites?
Expensive, heavy machinery and building tools can be sold on for a handsome profit. What’s more, the recovery rate of plant machinery in the UK is just 9%, compared with a 50-60% recovery rate of motor vehicles. So, in short, the thief is able to commit the crime without doing the time.
Increasing recovery statistics
65.2% of those surveyed by the Chartered Institute of Building claimed that the tracking of plant vehicles was an effective measure, with a further 23.4% admitting that they had not tried the security device. Installing a tracking system is a cost worth incurring and Phantom Tracking can tell you why.
The Phantom Tracking System
The Phantom Tracking System can be installed in your heavy-duty plant machinery. If your construction site security is breached, and a thief is able to take control of one of your vehicles, the stolen machinery can be tracked. By tracking machinery the recovery statistics drastically increase. In addition to tracking, stolen equipment can also be remotely immobilized. This makes it much harder for the thieves to sell the stolen vehicle and extends the window in which the local authorities can return it to the owner.
The bottom line
Construction site security should not be compromised based on cost alone. Whilst security measures can be expensive, a fit-for-purpose site that implements strict security, quickly regains the investment through theft reduction, lowered insurance claims and a maintained reputation.
Call Phantom today on 0161 476 4050 and make your building site more secure. Don’t let thieves steal your living.