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Illegal Raves, Rave, Pandemic, Coronavirus, Music, Security, Unoccupied land, Empty Buildings

Are illegal raves becoming an increasing problem?

When we think of raves, we think of warehouse and underground spaces filled with revellers enjoying live performances under strobe lights and smoke machines.

But since the coronavirus pandemic hit our shores and lockdown was announced at the beginning of March 2020, concerts, live music, parties, and licensed raves were all cancelled amid fears of the number of Coronavirus infections rising.

8 months on the Coronavirus pandemic is still going on and still sees live music and concert events cancelled until further notice.

However, since the start of the pandemic and the relaxation of lockdown rules within Wales & the UK in the summer, there have been an increasing number of illegal raves springing up – enticing revellers who are looking to escape the reality of the current pandemic.

These new illegal raves are very reminiscent of the outdoor parties and warehouse raves of the ’80s and 90’s before the UK passed it’s 1994 criminal justice & public order act, which banned unlicensed parties.  Although raves never went away and went further underground, in recent years they have had a resurgence. This came to head this year when experts predicted that the drop in the number of coronavirus cases and the relaxation of restrictions during the summer would see England and Wales experience a “summer of rave” not seen since 1989.

In an email statement to Dazed, Michael Kill, the CEO of the Night Time Industries Association said “People are frustrated, they have missed festival season, summer holidays abroad, nightlife, restaurants, pubs and social gatherings in general”

Unlike in the summer where you could turn up to a field in a t-shirt and shorts and survive until the early hours, Kill says “the winter weather has meant that many of these events are now taking place in warehouses and buildings left empty by businesses who have closed due to the pandemic”. This poses a number of problems, especially as COVID can be transmitted more easily within enclosed spaces.

Although organisers of these illegal raves have been hit with fines of up to £10,000, the number of illegal raves still continues to grow. Including a rave that was openly advertised and was set to take place at a Welsh Mansion in North Wales on Saturday 14th November 2020.

As mentioned before, empty spaces such as unoccupied land, warehouses and buildings will be picked as prime places to hold illegal raves and will result in potential damages and even theft.

So, if you have empty land, a warehouse or building that could be a potential target here are some tips to keep your property safe:

Fencing

If you have an empty lot or have a building/ warehouse that sits in its own grounds then it is worth investing in fencing. There are many types of fencing available, including some that have anti-climb attributes or those with sharpened points at the top. In most situations, fencing that poses a physical threat will often dissuade trespassers.

Security doors and windows

If you own an unoccupied building, investing in security doors and windows will ensure that no intruders can get in and cause potential damage.

Using heavy-duty security doors that are made out of steel offer a higher level of protection compared to boarding or standard doors and windows.

CCTV

CCTV remains as one of the best deterrents to trespassers as they don’t want to be seen. Investing in CCTV allows you or a security provider to monitor your site or building 24/7, quickly respond to any trespassers and use the footage as evidence for investigations and prosecutions.

Physical Security

Having physical security for your site or unoccupied building is often the best deterrent against trespassers looking to use your property for an illegal rave. Here at A&R Security Services, we can offer a range of physical security solutions including our Manned Guarding services and mobile patrols. Our manned guards can be stationed at main entrances to your site or building and can be used to monitor onsite CCTV for any intruders. To compliment our manned guard security, we can provide mobile patrols that can patrol your site at agreed intervals, ensuring that all areas of your site and building are secure and look out for any trespassers.

You can read more on how you protect unoccupied property in these two blogs here X X

If you have unoccupied land, warehouse or building that you would like to keep secure during the winter months, the get in touch with us on 01656 713950 or visit our website for further details.

knife crime, Cardiff, Knife Crimes, Violent Crimes. Is knife crime on the rise?

Cardiff: Is Knife Crime on the rise?

In a recent violent incident in the centre of Cardiff – where 6 were hurt in disorder and stabbings – there are questions surrounding whether or not the rise in knife crime is to blame.

On Saturday, 6 individuals were taken to hospital after being violently attacked by a group of four people aged 16 and 17 – one sustaining head injuries and another three stabbed (non-life-threatening). The incident was dealt with quickly by South Wales Police who detained the four people who began the attack. However, they have urged parents who suspect their child was involved in the incident to come forward.

Dept Supt Esyr Jones Said “Tackling knife crime is the responsibility of us all and any parents who have suspicions about their children being involved are not protecting them by remaining quiet”

But has this incident highlighted the increase in Knife Crime and is there enough being done to prevent such an attack from happening again?

In 2010-11 there were 382 offences of Knife Crime and other violent behaviour in the area of Cardiff. In 2018-19 that number was 737, up from 621 the year before.

Compared to London, Manchester & Liverpool, Cardiff is relatively small in size and population and has a small number of knife-related crimes compared to them. However, in 2019 there were a number of knife-related incidents. In a 3-month period during the summer of 2019, three young men in and around Cardiff lost their lives. In June Fahad Nur died after being stabbed 21 times near Cathays Train Station. Asim Khan, 21 died after being stabbed in St Mary’s Street in July and Harry Bake who was 17, died from stab wounds last September.

And earlier this year in February 2020, South Wales police were issued a Section 60 that allowed police officers the powers to stop and search those who are suspected of holding a knife in the areas of Butetown, Grangetown and Riverside. This came after two men were stabbed 24 hours of each other – one incident in Riverside’s Seamon Street and another in Butetown’s Loudon Square.

In light of the recent crimes involving knives, individuals from local communities within Cardiff have set up charities to help support young people to stay away from knife crime. James Bourne who runs local self-defence classes (Kalah) regularly gets calls from his community asking to retrieve knives that have been found within homes and understands the devastating effects Knife Crime can have (with him being a close friend to the family of Asim Kahn). In an interview with Wales Online James was asked how the issue surrounding Knife Crime could be solved and said “The only way forward is harsher sentencing powers for those found committing knife crime, and greater police power to prevent it getting to that situation”

James added, “it’s not just teaching them, it’s showing them. I show my students videos of parents who have lost their sons”. You can read more here

Two years ago, South Wales Police launched Operation Sceptre, an in your face approach to tackling knife crime and the problems of serious violence and drugs that are associated with it.

Superintendent Wendy Gunney, Lead for Operation Sceptre said “Police forces across the country have recorded a rise in knife crime but mercifully the level of those offences in South Wales is not the same as in other parts of the UK, with knife crime remaining rare for the vast majority of communities here.

“But we can never be complacent. Every incident involving a knife has consequences for all those involved and so this is an issue we take extremely seriously.

“Under Operation Sceptre we have put in place a number of measures to address any concerns communities may have and clamp down on those who are carrying and using knives.

“We have invested in a number of measures to help tackle the issue.” – you can read more about Operation Sceptre here

You can read more about recent knife crimes in England and Wales in our blog here.

Sentences surrounding the carrying and the use of a knife range from six months custodial sentence and a maximum of 4 years. However, there are calls for harsher and tougher sentences to be issued to those carrying knives to help dissuade others from carrying them.

What should you do if you suspect someone is carrying a knife?

Knives are very easy to conceal on a person. Keeping yourself safe is vital and if you are confronted with the threat of violence, you should immediately walk away. Once you are safe, tell someone you can trust – a parent, teacher, lecturer, friend or the police.  It’s vital that you report anything you know about knife crime to the police on 101 or crime stoppers anonymously on 0800 555111. You can also report anything to do with knife crime 100% anonymously via fearless.

A&R Security Services can provide tailored professional security services for any business. For more information on how we can effectively protect your business contact us on 01656 713950 or here via our website 

Security Provider, Security Services, A&R Security, A&R Security Services, Manned Guarding, Mobile Patrols, Concierge Security

What are the 8 main things you should consider when looking for a security provider?

When you type security provider into a search engine, hundreds of thousands of security companies pop up and can make you feel overwhelmed – especially if you are unsure of which provider is best suited to you and your business.

Here at A&R Security Services, we understand that when looking for a professional security provider, there is a lot to consider such as:

  • What services do they provide?
  • Do they have a good track record of keeping businesses safe?
  • Will they suit my business and fulfil my needs?

And choosing the right one is a big decision to make, as the one you choose will be protecting your business from physical threats when you’re not there. Knowing you can count on your security provider should be the top priority when choosing and to help you make the right decision, take a look at the top 10 things you should consider when hiring a security company.

Are they and their officers fully insured and licensed?

In order for a security provider to offer security services, they need to have the right licenses and insurances in place. SIA (Security Industry Association) is the governing body for the private security sector and if the security providers guards do not hold an SIA license, they will be breaking the law and face up to 6 months in prison or receive a hefty fine. So before choosing a provider, ask for evidence that all of their guards are fully licensed to operate. Also, you should see their insurance policies and check that they have the right insurances in place to cover your property should there be any incidents.

Are they able to provide you with the services you need?

When you look at a business, no two are the same and require different services to suit their needs. When looking for a professional security provider, it is always good to have an idea of what you are after. This helps reduce your search but also give you the ability to ask specific questions about the services that they provide and whether or not they are the best fit for you.

However, when you are looking for security services you may have several security services working with each other. For example, if you’re a construction site or large corporate office block, you may need manned guards, concierge services, mobile patrols and key holding and alarm response services. So it is important to see if they offer a range of services.

Do they put customer service first?

Although you are looking for a security provider to provide you with professional security services for your business you should also look at how they provide those services. We all like to be treated like we are special, so you would want a security provider that is willing to go above and beyond to ensure that you are happy with the service that they are providing. Choosing a security provider that puts their customer service at the heart of everything they do will help avoid any hassle further down the line.

What are their customers saying about them?

Most often the best way to find out how well a security provider performs is by speaking to their customers directly. Customers have an impartial voice when it comes to the services they are paying for and can help you reach a decision on whether or not the security provider you are looking at is the right choice for you.

You could also look at your network and ask for recommendations or look at online testimonials and reviews about their customers experience with them.

And let’s be honest, you wouldn’t make a big purchase without reading the reviews, so why should a security provider be any different?

Are their guards multiskilled?

As mentioned before, security guards need to hold a valid SIA license that allows them to operate within the security industry. But it is always good to ask what else their guards can offer? Investing in multi-skilled guards can prove cost-effective.

Costs

Employing your own security team may seem like the easier option but in actual fact, it isn’t. When employing your own security team, there are hidden costs such as uniform, training, insurances and SIA licensing – So employing the services of a professional security provider is a much better option.

However, when looking for a professional security provider, the costs will be the biggest things to consider. And as they say “cheaper isn’t always best” and will result in you paying out extra to fix your providers mistakes. So, when looking for a provider be willing to invest a bit more in a higher quality service.

Industry experience

There are many security providers that are at different stages of their experience. Although going with a newer security provider may provide them with experience, it could lead to teething problems and potentially costly mistakes.

So, when investing in a security provider it is always good to go with one that has the experience and knowledge needed to ensure that your business is kept safe.

Are they flexible?

When looking for a professional security provider and looking at their services, it is always good to ask if they have flexibility with their services. For example, you may only need security services for a couple of months, only require patrols in the evening or require security staff to work certain shift patterns. However, if you require a more regular service then a fixed long-term contract is best suited to you to ensure that you get a continuous security service.

For more information about our security services call our head office team on 01656 713950 or visit our website

Has COVID-19 caused an increase in hate crime?

There are a number of triggers for discriminatory and racist behaviour to others (hate crime). With the recent pandemic hitting our UK shores, racial discrimination, and the current UK recession, these are triggering those to conduct hate crime on others.

There has been a long-standing tradition of research on racist attitudes and discriminatory practices and it has shown that threatening events such as terror attacks, economic shocks (recession) and outbreaks of infectious diseases (like the recent COVID-19 Outbreak) are contributing factors to increasing numbers of reported hate crimes.

Hate crimes have been generally increasing over the past seven years. With some threatening events such as the Manchester attack in 2017 and the Westminster Bridge attack in 2019 influencing the spikes in reported hate crimes. But other events such as the shooting in Paris in 2015 not influencing any spikes in hate crimes.

Hate Crime, Graph, Statistics, Security, Security Services, A&R Security Services, Crime

And in recent times, the Coronavirus Pandemic has triggered another spike in hate crimes against the Asian and ethnic communities.

As the Coronavirus originated from the Wuhan province of China, many southern and eastern Asian communities that reside within the UK became victims of hate crime.

Between the months of January and March 2020, when the Coronavirus pandemic was intensifying in the UK, the number of offences reported almost tripled compared to the same period of 2018 and 2019 – with at least 267 reports of hate crime were made across the UK.

From this figure, 63 offences were recorded by the Metropolitan police while forces in Cumbria, Devon and Cornwall, Essex, Humberside and Northamptonshire have already received more reports this year than they did throughout the whole of 2019 – with 375 hate crimes against Chinese people being recorded last year.

Since the outbreak of the Coronavirus in the UK, multiple incidents that involved racial abuse such as being spat on, punched, and verbally abused have been reported.

The Deputy chief constable Mark Hamilton – the national lead for hate crime said “no one is responsible for the outbreak and everyone has a right to be protected against targeted racial abuse”

In March 2020, the owner of a Chinese takeaway restaurant was “spat at” in the face by a teenage boy who demanded to know if he “had Coronavirus”.  The daughter of the takeaway owner Sharon So told the Independent that the offender who was part of a group of three began recording her father on his phone, demanding to know if he was infected with the virus.

In a separate incident, Jonathan Mok, a 23-year-old student from Singapore said he was beaten up on Oxford Street in London in a racial attack in February of this year.

Mr Mok said that a group mentioned Coronavirus before proceeding to punch him in the face. He also stated that one member of the group then said: “I don’t want your coronavirus in my country” then proceeding to hit him on the nose.

And in recent months the West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner David Jamieson said ‘A rise in violence was “almost inevitable” due to the pandemic.

He told reporters “I have been saying for some time, in the context of COVID-19, that a lot of pent-up feelings of people have, and being able to get out and combine that with people who are unsure about their future and about their jobs, it was almost inevitable that we would see a growth in violence”  this comes after the recent stabbings in Birmingham City Centre at the beginning of September.

 

For more information on how we can effectively protect your business with our security services, please visit our website or give our friendly team a call on 01656 713950

Cybersecurity, Physical Security, Security, Security Services, Security Guards, mobile Patrol, manned Guard, Alarm Response

Cybersecurity vs Physical Security: Which is more important?

When looking for ‘Security’ for either your home or business into google or other web browsers, you’re immediately greeted with results talking about increasing your firewall protections rather than actual physical security solutions.

And with the technology and the world now moving at such fast paces, cybersecurity is seen as one of the fundamental building blocks of any business or home network.

But with so many of us rushing to secure our networks and data, are businesses neglecting the physical aspect of their security? And should they be focusing on one aspect of find links between them?

Cybersecurity

In the past 20 years, technology has changed from us having static computer systems in locked rooms to us having mobile laptops that allow us to work anywhere. However, with the advancement in devices being able to connect to the internet and allowing us to work in any location, our technology and data can easily come under attack by rogue viruses and spyware.

In 2019, Hiscox insurers conducted research on Cyber-attacks on British firms and found that 55% had faced an attack compared to 40% in 2018. With the average losses from breaches soaring from £176,000 to £272,000 (an increase of 61%).

Physical Security

Where cybersecurity protects your data from criminals, physical guards protect your data and physical assets from physical threats. Physical Security guards can be used in a number of ways to protect physical assets including:

  • Alarm Response and key holding services
  • Manned guard
  • Mobile Patrol
  • Concierge/front of house.

Working together

With our modern lives seeing more and more technology, a modern security solution needs to utilise both cybersecurity and physical security and have both working together and informing each other.

And with the advancements in technology, physical security has changed. Before it was simply putting a key in a lock, but now large corporate buildings are installing more advanced systems such as keypads, access guards, audio/visual feeds to grant access. And these systems use data that needs to be protected.

Physical threats can also compromise your cybersecurity as it is much easier for a criminal to gain access to your network and steal your valuable data. This means that server rooms and data centres should be secured at all times and that businesses that use cloud networks should ensure that they only use reputable companies that have a proven track record when it comes to securing data.

There is no right or wrong answer when it comes to which is better. It’s more if a question of “How much is your business willing to invest in each and how you can make them work together”

If you are looking for a reputable security provider to coincide with your cybersecurity, take a look at our website for further details or contact us on 01656 713950.

Retail worker, violent and abusive behavior, COVID-19, Coronavirus, Pandemic, Lockdown

COVID-19: Is violence against retail workers getting worse?

When we think about those working through the pandemic, many think about the NHS staff, police force, fire, and ambulance services. But there are one group of key workers who have been vital in keeping Wales and the rest of the UK going and that are retail workers.

However, since the start of the lockdown in March, there has been increasing reports of retail workers receiving violent and abusive behaviour from customers. In response to this increase in violent behaviour, one supermarket chain Co-op announced that they were going to supply frontline staff who worked at 250 stores with body cameras.

The issue surrounding retail workers becoming victims of violent and abusive behaviour is one that has been around for years. But has the recent COVID-19 pandemic caused this sort of behaviour to increase? And is there anything being done to help protect retail workers?

In a recent article from ITV Wales, it mentioned that violent and abusive behaviour more than doubled during the pandemic, with the USDAW (a union representing welsh shop workers) calling for a law to protect retail workers from such behaviour.

Many retail workers who worked at supermarkets and other retailers felt anxious returning to work in fear that they would either be spat at, coughed or sneezed in response to them asking for customers to socially distance – as well as being pushed and verbally abused when enforcing buying limits on in-demand goods or being unable to issue returns on goods.

The USDAW conducted a survey and found that 1 in 6 shop workers were being abused on every shift and well over half (62%) of 5,000 workers surveyed said they experienced verbal abuse since the start of the pandemic. Whilst a third had been threatened by a customer and 4% had been assaulted.

One retail worker who took part in the USDAW survey said “I had never cried in work until the first week of the lockdown. I received constant abuse from nearly every customer during one shift when the rules were changed so that we couldn’t accept returns. I finally broke when one woman refused to leave the store and insulted me and berated me for not doing the return.

“The following day a man was very aggressive towards me for the same reason and I could visibly see him twitching in a way that suggested he was about to become violent. My job has become emotionally draining and it is really starting to affect my mental health.”

When averaged across the entire retail sector of 3 million workers, it showed that 3,500 workers were assaulted every day over a 34day period.

So what action is being taken to ensure the safety of retail workers?

The government has set out plans to crack down on the violent and abusive behaviour the retailers face on a daily basis. This included working alongside the National Retail Crime Steering Group (NRCSG) on best-practise guide to help support shop workers report acts of violent and abusive behaviour, strengthening and making full use of existing laws, and improving data sharing between businesses and the police.

However, there is opposition out there who think that the government’s plans aren’t enough to protect retail staff effectively. The BRC and Association of stores have both criticised the home office for not seeking to introduce specific and harsher offences to those attacking shop workers. ACS’s CEO said, ‘Warm words and working groups aren’t enough; we need tougher penalties for attacks on shopworkers and more police resources to stamp out violence”.

If your retail staff have been a victim of abusive and violent behaviour before and during the pandemic, then speak to us about our effective retail security solutions. Our manned guards hold full SIA licenses and are fully trained to act accordingly to protect your retail staff from abusive and violent customers. To learn more about how we can help take a look at our website here or get in touch with us on 01656 713950.

re-opening, Security, lockdown, crime risk, business security, keyholding, mobile patrols, a&R Security Services

Can re-opening your business from ‘lockdown’ put you at risk of crime?

Many businesses like yourself will be looking forward to re-opening your doors after months of lockdown. But besides ensuring that your staff and your customers stay safe when open, there are a few security risks that you need to consider when re-opening your business after lockdown.

Here are a few security risks that you need to consider:

Forgetful staff

We all know how easy it is to forget something when we haven’t done it for a long time, and this can be said for staff who have been furloughed. Some of your staff would have spent almost 10 weeks inside their homes and 10 weeks is a long time if your staff haven’t anything to keep their brains stimulated.

So, when staff return to work, it can be difficult for them to return back to their normal routine in work and can lead them to forget to close windows, doors, reset alarm codes or lock up. Leaving your building unknowingly vulnerable to criminal attacks.

To avoid your business becoming vulnerable at the end of the day due to forgetful staff invest in our professional key holding services. Our guards can conduct internal checks to ensure that all areas of your building is secure and can lock up when all of your staff have left for the day.

 Increased stock levels

You will most probably agree that lockdown has been playing on your nerves and you’re excited to get your business open once again. And you know what this means? Stock can be ordered; goods can be stored, and shipments can be made up for clients. However, with these increased levels of stock being left overnight or a large influx of deliveries, these can put your business at risk. Whether you have a warehouse or store full of stock our professional security guards can patrol your business 24 hours a day, 7 days a week ensuring that no unauthorised personal trespass onto your site.

Boundaries

As mentioned, 10 weeks is a long time for businesses to be closed and over those weeks, your business’ external boundaries could have been damaged by those attempting to trespass, compromising its integrity and effectiveness at keeping trespassers out. Before you open your business, conduct a patrol around the perimeter of your business, taking note of any damages or potential areas that could be exploited by criminals looking to target your business.

One way you can maintain your perimeter security is investing in our professional mobile guards. Our professional mobile guards can conduct regular or irregular patrols around the perimeter of your business looking out for any damages to your boundary fencing or suspicious individuals.

For more information about our professional security services and how they can help keep your business security when re-opening then take a look here or to arrange a free quote call us on 01656 713950.

Concierge Security, Concierge Security Services, Security Services,Security, A&R Security Services

Concierge Security: 5 reasons why you should have it

Whether you are a corporate building, a lavish hotel in the heart of the city centre or a manufacturing unit based in outskirts, they all need one thing. Security. In Swansea, there are hundreds of security providers offering a range of security services that will protect your business including concierge security.

But what is concierge security we hear you ask?
Concierge Security acts as another form of receptionist where they greet visitors to your building, take messages and answer any queries. But Concierge security staff also have the ability to control access to your building (whether that is internal or external) monitor CCTV, quickly respond to any emergency situations and apprehend criminals targeting your business.

So, what are the 5 reasons why you should have concierge security?

Instant protection

There are many benefits to having concierge security and one of the main benefits of having concierge security is instant support in terms of safety and patrols.  Not only can concierge monitor CCTV and raise alarms should there be anything threatening the safety of your business, but they also have the correct skills and training to handle and diffuse potential criminal situations.

By hiring concierge security for your business, you will have someone who is watching for any potential threats to your business. Giving you peace of mind that you can leave your premises lone for long periods of time.

Fully Vetted and Trained Staff

When looking for concierge security it is important to hire fully vetted, licensed and trained staff to protect your business. All of our staff are employed directly by us and are fully vetted by ourselves, ensuring that they are legally allowed to work within specific buildings and areas and are trained to the highest of standards.

Employing your own security staff can be tricky and a bit headache-inducing so letting a professional security provider that is able to fully vet and train their own staff, leaving you more time to focus on running your business and us taking care of the security.

It’ll save you money

We all like to save a bit of money where we can but outsourcing your concierge security can do the same. As you only need to pay for one service you don’t have to deal with pay, uniform, training and vetting costs. Outsourcing your concierge means you pay for specific staff as and when you need them and what’s great about outsourcing your concierge to us, you only have to pay for the services you want (no hidden costs or price hikes).

5-star customer service

You want to give your customers and visitors a face that they can trust when they walk into your building. Having concierge stationed by your reception will allow them to greet clients and visitors to your business and answer any queries or concerns that they may have.

Alongside providing clients and visitors with 5-star customer service, they can ensure that they receive all the regular protection they need. Concierge security can arrange emergency procedures and can ensure that any incidents are fully logged and taken care of.

Clients and visitors so to your business will find concierge a wealth of knowledge and information, as well as help. They will make sure that your business is fully protected and that your guests receive full answers to their burning questions.

Takes the hassle off your hands

When thinking about concierge security for your business it can be very tempting to employ security staff yourself but with further inspection, it can be both timeconsuming and expensive. And think about the other hassle you need to deal with such as welcoming and checking in guests, making sure security protocols are being adhered to.

So, outsourcing your concierge security is a bit of a no brainer. You won’t have to worry about vetting or checking anyone that comes or goes from your business. Our professional security staff can be set to work in establishing a firm but friendly face at the front of your business. They’ll follow your security protocols and will make sure that your CCTV and other security measures are monitored and analysed.

Running a business can take up a lot of your time and you may not have thought or considered concierge security for your business, but there are plenty of reasons why it can benefit you and your business in the long run.

Rather than having to focus on employing your own security staff and training them, why not look at hiring concierge security from a security provider that you can fully trust.

A&R Security provides a wide range of security services that have benefited many businesses across South Wales and the South West. If you are considering Concierge Security for your business visit our website or call us on 01656 713950 for a free non-obligation quote.

Construction, Lockdown, Coronavirus, COVID-19, Construction Security Services, A&R Security Services

Lockdown: How to protect your Construction Site

Those who work within the construction industry know that there are high levels of crime, with many reporting theft and vandalism on a regular basis. However, with only essential construction being carried out during the Coronavirus outbreak, many sites across Cardiff, Newport, Swansea and the UK have had to temporarily close their gates – leaving them vulnerable to criminal activity.

A survey carried out by the CIOB (Chartered Institute of Building) reported 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. These figures are often attributed to high staff turnover, poor record-keeping and poor security measures.

However, there are some cost-effective security measures that you can implement to boost your construction sites security during these difficult times.

Risk Assessment

Before spending vast amounts of money to improve your construction sites security it is best to have a risk assessment carried out by a professional security provider. This will help you identify which areas will need security, which areas will need improvement and ensure that your security is covering all possible areas of weakness on your site.

Construction Security

Professional Security providers like ourselves will provide professional construction security services to sites. But to many sites construction security is a little bit of an unknown, with many site owners not really knowing what it is or what it does.

Construction Security is an umbrella term and usually entails services such as:

  • CCTV monitoring
  • Alarm response
  • Manned Guards and Mobile Patrols
  • Access Control
  • Secure Keyholding

Construction Security is very good for covering all aspects of security and can be easily tailored to suit your site’s needs while it is temporarily closed.

Alongside having construction security for your site there are a few other measures that can be implemented to give you tighter security.

Create and maintain an up-to-date log

Whether your site is on a small scale or large scale, you will have materials, equipment and possibly vehicles left on site (preferably secured). However, there are employees or criminals that will take advantage of the fact that your site is temporarily closed and will take this opportunity to steal anything that they can get their hands on.

Creating and maintaining an up-to-date log of materials, equipment and vehicles will help you keep track of what is and isn’t onsite – allowing you to quickly respond and report anything stolen. After all emergency services such as the police have a better chance at returning stolen good when they are reported missing quickly.

Have a clear zone around your perimeter

Fencing is a very basic security measure to keep trespassers off your site. However, if your fencing is close to the perimeter of your site this will make it very easy for criminals to sneak in and out of your site without anyone noticing.

When installing fencing on your site, ensure that it is a couple of meters away from the site itself. This will make it harder for criminals to sneak onto your site and easier for you, your guards or CCTV to spot them trespassing onto your site. It also makes it difficult for criminals to see what is actually stored on your site.

Mark Equipment

Equipment such as mini diggers, generators, heavy tools and other equipment can be very easy targets and are often stolen and quickly sold on. Engraving marks on your equipment will make them less likely to be stolen and if they are, they are easily recognisable.

Most tools on construction sites are metal so engraving certain numbers, your company logo or symbol will easily deter thieves. Engraving tools are cheap, readily available and easy to use, but the amount of money and time they will save you could be substantial. Some tools are interchangeable or can be broken down for easier transportation so make sure to engrave multiple areas.

Reduce access points

If you have a reduced team of workers working during your lockdown, then you may want to reduce the number of access points you have. This allows you or your security team to easily track who is coming in and out of your site and also ensure that your workers aren’t able to sneak off-site with valuable materials or equipment through another gate on site.

Reducing the number of access points make your perimeter stronger but your main access points (main gates) are still vulnerable. Placing CCTV camera’s, security lights and manned guards at your main access points will reduce the chances of someone attempting to get onto your site illegally.

If you are interested in our Construction Security Services then please visit our website for more information or contacts us on 01656 713950 to arrange a free quotation.

Retail, Retail Security, Security Services, A&R Security Services

Why security officers are vital for retail stores.

Retailers are constantly being targeted by criminal activity which often results in lost revenue and costly damages. The British Retail Consortium (BRC) reports over 10,000 shop thefts per day in the UK. Theft by customers has increased by 33% and damages to retailers have increased by 105% in 2019.

With these increases, retail workers are also seeing increased volumes of violence, abuse and robberies on a day-to-day basis. The most concerning thing is that criminal are resorting to violent behaviour to assist with theft and crimes are usually committed by those who are either intoxicated by alcohol or drugs.

As mentioned, retailers face violence, abuse and robberies on a daily basis but they also see a range of crimes including:

Shoplifting:

Shoplifting usually involves the theft of goods from a retailer. It can be committed by an individual or by groups of people.

Checkout fraud

Some customers who come into a store will go to great lengths to avoid paying for items properly. They may swap price stickers, swap barcodes or not pay for all items at the till. This is why all items (especially high-value items) should be security tagged and retail staff should be vigilant.

Money Fraud

Although banks and the Royal Mint have created ways to prevent criminals from stealing cards or counterfeiting money, the are still some who manage this. Retailers should have restrictions and checks in place to avoid this. For example, banknotes should be checked under UV lamps to check their authenticity.

Refund Fraud

Many who return goods which are not good or no longer needed are innocent. However, there are some that try to forge receipts and attempt to return stolen items in the hopes of gaining money or credit.

Moped Gangs

Although this is not frequently seen in Cardiff and other Welsh cities, moped crimes are still a serious problem. In larger cities such as London, there has been an increase in moped gangs targeting high-end stores such as jewellers and electronic stores.

 

With this range of crimes committed, it can be difficult for retailers to remain both vigilant and run their store. So, how can security officers help?

Security officers can help protect your retail store, employees, customers and products from thieves and other criminals. Shoplifting is one of the most common types of theft within the retail industry and is a real concern. With many customers flocking to our high streets, it can be incredibly difficult for staff to remain vigilant and carry out their job to the best of the abilities.

Having security guards in place gives your staff that extra set of eyes to look out for any suspicious-looking persons or behaviour. But they are also an effective deterrent and can quickly act accordingly if they spot anyone stealing for your store.

If there is a situation that has escalated quickly, security guards can help de-escalate a situation and address any threats and violence before they occur. Controlling crowds during peak times is also important. Officers can control customers to ensure that they are able to shop safely.

Retail staff are not trained well enough to calmly deal with an emergency. Security officers are trained in first aid, fire safety and health and safety and are able to assess and calmly deal with a situation.

Investing in manned guards give your customers and staff peace of mind – knowing that their safety is your top priority. Any suspicious activity can be continuously monitored, and any emergencies are dealt with correctly and swiftly, and tense situations are prevented. This allows your retail staff to get on with their jobs.

If you are a retailer in Cardiff and are looking to employ security staff, then look at our manned guard security services. All of our guards hold full SIA licenses and are fully trained. Hiring security officers puts companies and individuals at an advantage. As officers can provide a physical presence, surveillance and on-going patrols.

If you would like to know more about our services then please contact A&R Security Services on 01656 713950  or visit our website