Valuable equipment in the open and quiet periods out of hours tempt thieves
It’s true that construction sites often house highly valuable equipment and materials often out in the open and in locations that can become very quiet and isolated after hours.
This combination acts as a temptation to thieves along with general ‘negative influences’ such as arsonists and vandals.
What are trespassers looking for?
For those just intent on causing damage such as vandals and arsonists, a construction site is fair game as they can be in remote locations and are pretty much deserted at night. Consequently, some damage may not be noticed until sometime after it’s been sustained.
It’s very frustrating and indeed distressing for construction companies and builders to deal with the effects of vandalism of this type if only due to its totally negative nature; the idea that people derive some type of satisfaction purely from causing damage to others’ property and results of hard work.
Unlike vandalism, theft at least has logic in that thieves derive benefit from equipment and materials they’ve stolen in either keeping it for themselves, selling it on, or using it to perpetrate another crime elsewhere.
In the case of the latter, a construction site appeals in that they often contain powerful equipment and machinery that can be used to make another crime much easier to carry out.
For example, there have been cases of thieves stealing machinery such as diggers to rip cash machines from walls. Other equipment – even something basic such as a lump hammer – can be used to break into other properties, and these and other basic tools can be found at many construction sites.
If a thief is after tools and equipment, then some construction sites are vulnerable as items are sometimes left lying around and generally not put into secure storage when the site is unattended – at least that’s what some potential trespassers bank on.
There’s also the attraction of poorly secured sites during the day; some more confident trespassers visit the construction site during working hours and may steal smaller items of equipment as opportunity presents itself.
It’s more possible to deter thieves and vandals with modern equipment such as specialised CCTV to help with construction security but sites do potentially offer a less risky and more remote location than a busier area – hence their appeal.
With fuels such as diesel becoming ever more expensive, fuel theft is an attractive option for some, and they know there are many machines containing large tanks of fuel just sitting there.
Stealing fuel and then transporting what may end up being a heavy load away from the location takes a certain amount of time, so a construction site is appealing as there’s potentially less likelihood of being disturbed out of hours as there might be stealing fuel from machinery and vehicles in more populated areas.
Vulnerable site offices
Some less well secured site offices can provide rich pickings for thieves containing equipment such as computers, tablets and other tech equipment.
Again, the remote location makes it more possible the thief can break in easier and spend longer there without being disturbed compared to, for example, breaking into a commercial premise.
Why construction sites are a prime target for trespassers whether potential vandals or thieves; a combination of often deserted locations and valuable equipment.