If you're a contractor who supervises a team of construction workers, you're likely one of the first to arrive at the work site each morning and the last to leave at night. Unfortunately, even this level of diligence may not be enough to keep your tools and equipment (not to mention your construction progress) safe overnight. In fact, more than one of every five general contractors suffers theft from the job site on a weekly basis, with more than 90 percent experiencing what they would describe as "regular" theft. Although your insurance may cover certain stolen equipment or help pay breach of contract damages if your progress is delayed, seeking reimbursement and replacing items is a hassle you want to avoid. What can you do to minimize the risk of damage or theft? Read on to learn more about keeping your construction site secure from vandals and would-be burglars.
What preliminary steps should you take to keep your tools and equipment secure after hours?
It's generally a good practice to ensure your tools and equipment are thoroughly marked so that they can be more easily tracked if the thief attempts to pawn or sell them. Inscribing your company name or contact information just below the serial number of any pieces of heavy equipment (along with hidden inscriptions on a couple of other areas) will make it much more difficult for thieves to convert their haul into cash and should allow you to recover your equipment in many cases. Placing bright decals with your company name and logo on the sides of your equipment can serve the dual purpose of advertising your business while making your bulldozers and skid steers less desirable to thieves.
For smaller tools and equipment, marking each tool with a logo or decal can be overkill. However, to the extent you're able, you'll want to put at least your company name and phone number on your more expensive tools with a small engraver. Taking these preliminary anti-theft measures can even reduce your insurance costs by lowering the risk that items will be stolen and not recovered.
What else can you do to keep your construction site secure?
Once you've taken these preliminary steps to make it easier to track any items or equipment that could be stolen, you'll need to make it more difficult for would-be thieves and vandals to access your site in the first place. While bright orange temporary construction fencing is weatherproof and sturdy enough to keep out most animals that might otherwise wander onto your construction site, it serves only as a deterrent for humans—any determined burglar or vandal can easily step over it or tear it down entirely.
If you'd prefer a higher level of security on your job site, you may want to rent more substantial construction fencing, like chain link fence panels with barbed wire at the top. These fencing panels are much more substantial than temporary fencing and can even be set into place with cement to prevent an intruder from being able to push the fence over without having to climb over the dangerous apex. Depending upon the location of the electrical lines at your construction site, installing an electrified wire fence can also be a good way to deter any burglars or vandals. Visit a website like http://rent-a-fence.com/ for more information.
Additionally, you'll want to meet with neighborhood officials or other local business owners to discuss the idea of a neighborhood watch (if one isn't already in place). Having even just a few extra sets of eyes around your construction site and neighbors not afraid to confront suspicious-looking intruders can go a long way toward keeping your construction site free from vandals and miscreants.