Risks of theft on a construction site

Risks of theft on a construction site

With the demand for housing at some of the highest levels in history in Australia, there is obviously no shortage of building activity across the states and territories. In Queensland alone, 48,000 new approvals for residential construction were issued in 2015, according to the Housing Industry Association.

Clearly it's a lucrative time to be in the building game in our nation, but with so much money flooding into the sector, the attraction also increases for the criminal element. Every construction site has its share of valuable items, whether that be the building materials themselves or the tools that tradespeople use on the job. Protecting these items is a constant concern for site managers and tradies alike, and investing in video alarm systems could be a wise choice.

What items are most at risk?

In many cases, thefts from any location are simple crimes of opportunity. Anything that has been left accessible runs a risk of being taken unlawfully, however on construction sites there are certainly some items that could be considered a higher risk.

According to research from the Australian Institute of Criminology, raw materials are the most frequently stolen items. It's not difficult to understand why - not only are they present on every building site, but large amounts of timber or bricks are unlikely to be stored in a secure location whenever workers aren't around due to their weight and size. Copper piping is also a valuable item, as the metal can fetch a high price from scrap dealers.

Theft of small construction tools and other hand-held equipment came in as the second-most common occurrence, items which are easily stored away during off-hours, but small enough to be grabbed by opportunistic thieves at almost any time.

There's more to the problem than just theft

In the case of a raw materials theft, the financial impact on your project can go much further beyond the value of the stolen items themselves. Copper, for example, is often stripped from complicated electrical wiring systems which have already been installed, systems which are potentially destroyed in the process. For the potential gain of a few hundred dollars worth of copper, thieves have been known to cause many thousands of dollars in damages. 

Both as a deterrent and evidence gathering device, having a video security system at your next building project can give you peace of mind. Talk to NSR Group today about how to protect your construction site today. 

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