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How to Prevent Construction Site Theft

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Jobsite Security

How to Prevent Construction Site Theft

If you are in the construction industry, you know that theft is a very costly problem for the industry. There are many precautions to take to prevent theft, but a customized security plan is your best bet for protecting your site. Construction site theft is a large problem, but it is preventable.

Why Comprehensive Construction Site Security Is So Critical

When construction site theft can potentially cost your construction company thousands in a single loss event, it’s crucial to enact safeguards in theft prevention on your jobsite. Commonly stolen equipment includes:

  • Power tools
  • Heavy machinery
  • Building material (lumber, copper wiring, other metals, etc.)
  • Residential appliances

While trespassers might steal from a jobsite after the workday ends, your employees may also help themselves to small items or materials that they think you won’t miss. While each drill may only cost $60, a screwdriver just $10, and a piece of lumber $14, it adds up over time. Even small stolen items can cost your construction company thousands of dollars in losses each budgeting period.

Effective theft prevention methods with construction site security services are essential for deterring losses due to criminal activity.

The Most Common Targets for Construction Site Theft

Small Tools and Supplies

Merely because of size, tools and small supplies are perhaps the easiest targets for thieves on your site. Unfortunately, most of this type of theft comes from within the ranks of those working on your site. A drill or screwdriver here or there doesn’t seem like a huge loss. However, if these items are disappearing on a regular basis, the cost really adds up.

Construction site surveillance is not just for after-hours. Great video surveillance systems can complement great inventory practices to keep tabs on your small tools and supplies. Since this is the most common type of theft among employees and subcontractors on your site, you can often prevent theft of this kind by building better relationships with these individuals. Get to know your employees and subcontractors. Great relationships and a positive security culture help prevent inside criminal activity.Jobsite Security

Heavy Machinery

Though larger equipment is harder to target, mainly due to size, it is still a target. Stealing heavy machinery is common for thieves looking for a large score. Sometimes thieves of heavy machinery are employees or subcontractors, and sometimes not. Either way, even just one heavy piece of equipment stolen creates a problem of high cost for a job.

While excellent video construction site surveillance will help in detecting and apprehending a suspect, there are other ways to make it harder for someone to steal heavy equipment. Keeping valuable tools and equipment securely locked after hours will help deter thieves. The visible presence of security systems in place will also help.


Particularly during residential construction booms, appliances are a valuable target for thieves, as well. They are sometimes delivered to sites before they are ready to be installed. In new residential areas, builders are often constructing several homes at the same time. These areas become a prime target for appliance theft.

Fortunately, the right jobsite security enables you to monitor and protect all of your jobsite’s valuables with minimal to no loss.

prevent theft of lumberLumber

Lumber is rarely inventoried well, so “spare” lumber is often taken by employees or others on the site who might do construction projects on the side. To prevent theft of lumber, keep a close watch on employees who hang around until others have left the site. Review surveillance records to be sure there is nothing leaving the site with employees.

As with small tools and supplies, fostering relationships with your employees can have an impact on lumber theft as well.

How to Get Proactive with Your Construction Site Security

Theft prevention is always easier than trying to recover stolen items once you realize something is missing.

Methods you can use in theft prevention include:

  • Screening employees for previous jobsite theft before hiring.
  • Encouraging a positive security and loss culture with employees.
  • Storing heavy equipment keys in a locking cabinet at the end of the day.
  • Keeping secure records of equipment details such as serial numbers, PINs, and other identifying characteristics.
  • Securing your jobsite with sturdy fencing and angled barbed wire fence top posts.
  • Investing in security cameras, thermal cameras, mobile radar, ATOM video surveillance, mobile surveillance units, and other security monitoring solutions.
  • Placing motion-sensor activated lights.

At EyeSite Surveillance, we help you determine the best surveillance options for your construction jobsites. We offer an assortment of real-time security cameras, police response alarm systems, and active monitoring services. Our goal is to provide you with four reliable layers of construction site security: deterrence, detection, assessment, and apprehension.

The Impactful Benefits of Implementing Expert Jobsite Security

Besides reducing instances of construction site theft, implementing comprehensive construction site security services helps manage a wide range of jobsite issues such as vandalism, tagging, arson, destruction, and other instances that could become major setbacks for a project.

With security cameras, you can also monitor the jobsite’s progress from anywhere, ensuring that your crew is on track to complete the job on time.

Additionally, construction site injuries are common, with nearly 20% of all worker deaths each year happening in construction. Real-time camera monitoring during working hours can help you spot dangerous situations before they cause an injury, allowing you to mitigate any potential harm before it occurs. If an injury occurs, you can save the footage of the incident.

Preventing injury on a jobsite is essential to finishing a project on time and at cost. Injuries can lead to:

  • Understaffing after injured workers can no longer return to work
  • Lowered morale among workers
  • Increased costs for OSHA fines, workers’ compensation claims, and injury lawsuits

Is Your Jobsite Protected from Criminal Activity?

No matter the target, there are steps to take to prevent construction site theft. Correctly positioned video surveillance cameras and a complete security plan, as well as healthy relationships with employees, fostered daily, will help prevent theft. Contact us today at 855-466-8433 to learn more about the benefits of EyeSite Surveillance security solutions against construction site theft and other jobsite issues.



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