SEPTEMBER 25, 2017
Earlier this year, an estimated $500 thousand worth of stolen construction equipment was recovered in Anderson, Indiana. Skid loafers, trucks, wreckers, and tools were among the items recovered from the site after a man reported that he had found some of his stolen construction equipment on the property.
The National Insurance Crime Bureau puts the value of stolen construction equipment at about $1 billion every year, with only a 30 percent recovery rate. This doesn’t, of course, include interruptions and losses which include the cost of rentals and project-delay fines.
With the average value of a stolen piece of equipment costing approximately $46 thousand, thefts cause serious losses to any contractor or equipment owner.
Here are six ways you can protect your construction equipment from theft on site.
1. Keep an up-to-date inventory. It’s important to keep a product’s make, year of manufacture, serial number, and other details in a secure file. Take photos of all your equipment, so it’s easy to identify them. If your construction equipment doesn’t have a proper serial number or Product Identification Number (PIN), it will be easier for an individual to get away with stolen equipment. In this case, create a serial number for the equipment to keep track of it for your records.
2. Install tracking technology. Recent developments in technology, such as telematics, have made tracking stolen equipment easier. The Internet of Things, or IoT, is a network of connected devices and vehicles, which allows contractors and owners to get real time information about the performance and location of their equipment.
One of the best ways to overcome theft is to monitor your equipment through GPS Asset Tracking Technology. It is ideal for outdoor use and effective in areas where cellphone signals are hazy.
3. Assess the level of risk in your location. Texas, North Carolina, Illinois, Maryland, and Georgia are among the top 10 states for heavy equipment theft in 2016. Wheeled and tracked loaders, towables, skid steer loaders, and excavators are among the most vulnerable to theft. Equipment high in value or mobility is more likely to be stolen.
No matter where you keep your equipment, it is important to assess the security of an area to understand your risk level. Suburban areas with newer construction projects are the main target for thieves. If your equipment is in such areas, ensure you’re taking extra precautions.
4. Organize equipment strategically. A simple way to prevent theft is to strategically secure all equipment at the end of each work day and before the weekend. Parking them close together in a circle, with the smaller ones in the middle is recommended. Investing a few extra dollars in fuel costs to move equipment to a safer location can help prevent thousands of dollars in losses. If your project is going to run for just a few more months, you could rent shipping containers for safe storage of your construction equipment.
5. Install good lighting. Lighting that covers long distances across the construction premises can ward off potential burglars. Light towers are a good option because they stand as high as 30 feet and beam light in all directions. You could also install lighting on the perimeter of the site and near expensive equipment.
6. Lock away small tools and devices. Basic security can go a long way in protecting vulnerable equipment. Wheel locks, fuel shut-offs, and ignition locks are just a few options to prevent theft of vehicles. Consider locking away smaller and more valuable equipment in on-site shipping storage containers.
Installing surveillance cameras captures any activity, allowing you to report and identify thieves. Employing a security guard is another alternative.
If you haven’t already established an action plan to prevent thefts, start today! You don’t want to be in a situation where you regret not spending that extra bit of time and money to secure your equipment.
Use Shipping Containers to Secure Construction Equipment
Mobile Modular Portable Storage offers shipping containers for rent or sale with highly secure lock options. If you don’t want to buy cargo containers for storage, you can always rent them. That way, you can use shipping containers temporarily and return them when your project is completed.
Our shipping container rental offers a convenient 30-day billing cycle (instead of the usual 28 days). We don’t sub-contract deliveries, so our own fleet of delivery vehicles guarantee that your shipping containers reach you when you need them. Request a quote for high-security shipping containers today.
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