For many contracting businesses, construction equipment vandalism and theft are rampant problem in the industry. It is a major concern because the number of stolen construction equipment and materials amounts to $1 billion each year. The risk is different depending on many regional factors and overall industry losses include costly work delays that also hurt reputations.

Surprisingly, only 25% of stolen construction equipment is reclaimed by local authorities. Construction site theft is a lucrative business for thieves because building tools, materials and machinery are often left out in the open or poorly secured. Moreover, there is no DMV database for construction equipment, materials or tools. Easy access, low security, no records and ready to sell high-value items create the perfect environment for thieves.To reduce the potential threat, we’re providing these tested and proven security tips to follow in order to prevent it on from happening on your construction site.

  1. Light up your site at night.

Did you know that most construction site theft are inside jobs, perpetrated by employees themselves? This is because they’re already familiar with the jobsite layout, work schedule, tools and equipment. Thieves, vandals, and yes, even union activists see unsecured construction sites as opportunities. If a worker knows the layout of the construction site, they know where to go, what they’re looking for and how to slip past less secure areas by taking advantage of blind spots.

If bad actors are not confident that their illegal activity can go undetected, they usually move on to an easier target. The best deterrent for this problem is to keep your site well-lit. If the bad guys know they may be seen by security patrols or nearby properties, they’ll often think twice. A simple idea like lights, make the site more visible from the road and less desirable. A well-lit site also helps security guards and local police patrols keep eyes on your jobsite.

  1. Make surveillance cameras part of your security plan

One of the most effective solutions is a temporary surveillance camera system that is backed-up to the cloud. After strategically placing a few cameras at the construction site, let everybody know that these cameras will be monitor the site 24/7. When buying surveillance cameras, there are a few key things that you should know:

  • You’ll need a power source. There are solar powered cameras, which is a convenient choice if the construction site is located in a remote area. You maynot need power to operate it during the day, but you will need the batteries during overnights. Especially if the site is unattended.
  • Sophisticated surveillance camera models are equipped with additional features such as high definition, infrared, motion sensor, Wi-Fi connectivity and SMS notifications, giving you real-time update to a monitoring facility or right to your smart phone by text alerts.
  • A more affordable option is the installing motion sensor only lights. It uses less power consumption than cameras, but it will still be sensitive to movements. When the motion sensors notice movements on the construction site, a light will turn on to draw attention to that specific area. Some systems include a audio warning, alarm or immediately alert the monitoring or security guard company.
  • Whatever surveillance camera you choose — the placement is equally important. You need to place the lights near the storage trailer, equipment or materials.
  • Remember, it’s not much good if the camera only shows a blurry bad guy in hood after all the damage is done. The main idea is to deter or stop incidents before it happens. More tips to be discussed on Improving Your Construction Site Security (Part 2).

Build a relationship with a reliable and responsive security guard company.

Choose Echelon Protection & Surveillance to secure and protect your construction site from unwanted and illegal activity like theft, hazard, fire, vandalism, loss and costly delays. Call 610-831-0277 or email