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Four Ways to Reduce Equipment Theft

Posted on March 16th, 2016

Construction Bulldozer

It’s no government secret that proper equipment storage reduces potential losses for construction companies and contractors. In 2014, the National Equipment Register estimated an annual cost of $300 million to $1 billion from construction site theft, with only a small percentage, about 21 percent to 23 percent, ever being recovered.

There are steps you can take to reduce the risk of theft. While nothing is ever guaranteed, forming good habits will enable you to build a strong foundation to protect your investments.

Site Security

First and foremost, you must maintain a safe work environment – both during and after working hours. Have keyed or combination locks for your equipment. If necessary, place a sturdy chain-link or barbed wire fence around your work site.

Setting up an alarm system and/or video surveillance allows you to monitor the site, reducing equipment theft, as well as material and other thefts. Reinforce your efforts with proper signage, clearly denoting your security presence. You can also limit the number of individuals who have keyed access to the site for further control.

Well Lit Site

Visuals are key. A site that looks tough to crack will deter many thieves looking for easy and risk-free opportunities. Utilizing a low-cost solution like well-placed lights can vastly improve the security in your construction site. Just remember to check the lights regularly during inspections and routine perimeter checks.

Know Your Inventory

Keep accurate and up-to-date records of every piece of equipment and the materials you have. Although it is tedious, an accurate inventory will allow you to quickly recognize and pinpoint exactly what was stolen and when it was stolen.

Understand Latest Technologies

Today’s market offers many technological advances that increase the security of your equipment. GPS tracking on your vehicles or equipment offers a real-time location ping to your computer or smartphone. This can be especially useful for equipment stored on-site or as well as equipment while in transit.

Another technology recently commercialized is keyless ignition. This particular tech usually requires a specific control switch, usually in the form of a key fob or an authorized smartphone with a specific app, to start the vehicle. However, make sure nothing valuable is ever stored in your vehicle, as thieves can still get away with them.

You can never be too prepared when protecting your assets. Use these tips to generate a checklist for your personal reminder especially at a new work site. The time and effort will definitely pay off.

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