Poorly protected Construction sites in areas in and around Cardiff can be rich pickings for criminals looking to steal valuable equipment and materials to make ‘easy money’
Many construction and building sites in and around Cardiff don’t properly protect themselves from criminal activity such as theft and can result in thousands of pounds worth of loss. A recent survey that was conducted revealed that 92% of sites claim to be affected by crime with a further 21% of sites saying that they are stolen from on a regular basis.
However, there is some light at the end of the tunnel and there are some easy cost-effective strategies that can help protect your construction site from further criminal activity.
So, what is construction security?
Construction Security is an umbrella term that refers to a range of security services and measures that can be used to protect a construction site.
These services and measures may include:
- Physical guards
- Alarm installation and monitoring
- CCTV Surveillance
- Access control
- Staff training
- Guard Dogs.
However, securing a construction site would require different security measures compared to retail or corporate environment. So, when construction site owners are looking to create or have effective security measures, they will need to know what security measures will be appropriate for them.
Also, security measures that should be prioritised should be determined by your sites specific requirements such as location, local crime rate and values of onsite materials/equipment and emergency response times.
In order to figure out the security measures which will be most effective at your site and where you should put them, you will first need to conduct a thorough security assessment.
To ensure your construction site remains protected from criminal activity – it’s important to know some essential techniques (with many not costing anything). However, by ensuring you implement these techniques will go a long way in protecting your site.
Create and maintain an up-to-date inventory
With so much equipment and material on-site, it’s possible for criminals to take advantage of you with you even noticing it is happening. To ensure you know what is exactly on or off your site, you should maintain an up-to-date inventory log of all tools, equipment, machinery and materials you have.
You should fill in our inventory log at least weekly to give you the best chance of spotting and quickly responding to theft. After all emergency services such as the police have a better chance at returning stolen good when they are reported missing quickly.
Maintain a clear zone around your perimeter fence.
Thieves will always look at ways to minimise the risk of them being caught and as a result, will target site which they believe will offer larger and easier pickings. For a thief, the less time they spend actively involved in a crime the better.
If you have a perimeter fence already installed on your site it can make it more difficult for criminals to steal from your site as this makes it difficult for them to see what is actually on your site – meaning they will have to cross the site itself in order to reach your belongings and making the chances of them being spotted greater. It is suggested that you should have a clear zone of between 5 to 10 meters. However smaller sites may not have the ability to do this – in which case it would be best to make as large of clear space as possible.
For criminals, equipment such as mini diggers, generators, heavy drills and other tools can be very easy targets and are often stolen. Marking equipment can make it much harder for thieves to sell on anything they’re able to take.
Most tools that are used on construction sites are comprised of metal so engraving sections of metal with your company logo or a small symbol can easily deter criminals. Engraving machines are cheap and are easy to use, but the amount of money they will save you, in the long run, could be substantial. To ensure that your tools are effectively marked, engrave them in multiple places especially on places that can be removed such as tool bits like drills and chisels.
Reduce access points
Construction sites such as yours should be surrounded by a secure perimeter fence to prevent intruders accessing your site. So, it should be robust and impenetrable but of course, workers and any other people who are required on-site will need to be able to enter.
Although it may be tempting to create multiple points of entry with a large site to allow workers and vehicles to flow out of your site, it is essential that you keep access points to a minimum.
Any access point you create is a potential vulnerability and this is especially true when you have a second access point where security may be lacking. To reduce the potential for illegal entry, reduce your access points and position manned guards, CCTV cameras and security lighting at these access points.
Train your staff
Maintaining an effective security team is an effort. It only takes one person to lose focus for your site to become vulnerable to criminal activity. So, to prevent your staff from losing focus it is important that they understand how important security is and what their role requires them to maintain proper protection. Particular duties may include signing in and out of your site, locking up tools and vehicles, maintain the clear zone and reporting suspicious activity.
But no matter how comprehensive your plan is if your team fails to follow it, it is pretty much useless.
A&R Security Services provides comprehensive security solutions to construction sites in Cardiff and South Wales. To request a free quote call us on 01656 713950 or visit our website for further details.