Friday Tool Box Talk- Construction Theft

In this package we emphasized  compulsory Tool Box Talk on Friday Morning… for this week the management has pick one critical issue that is Construction Site Theft… Pick only salient point and share with your worker and conveyed the messages on how to reduce Construction Theft at workplace…..

Construction theft is literally and figuratively big business, with industry experts estimating annual losses at roughly $1 billion.  Contractors, equipment dealers, insurance companies, equipment manufacturers all suffer when job sites are vandalized or equipment and materials are stolen.

The phenomenon of theft and vandalism of construction sites is not new . This is a national problem that will not go away.  Whether we like it or not, this is here to stay and what the industry must do is try to limit the incidents as much as possible by making it difficult for the perpetrators to succeed. 


A stolen piece of equipment or material can shut the job down temporarily.  Insurance costs are bound to rise.

Rental companies may refuse to rent to people who don’t properly guard their assets.  nCompany reputations can be severely damaged through vandal actions or repeated thefts.  Failure to act in a pre-emptive way to avoid theft and vandalism is irresponsible and unnecessary.

An estimated 90% of all equipment thefts take place between 6 p.m. Friday and 6 a.m. Monday. Holidays and week nights are next.

  • Sites are most vulnerable on weekends
  • Heavy equipment most likely to stay intact
  • Tools are most popular
  • Appliances are popular as well
  • Scrap metal/copper prices are high so theft increases

Owners/builders must be committed to stopping theft and vandalism on their sites

Build Partnerships with local ssuppliers and scrap metal companies in the area.

  • Talk to the community and neighborhood associations you are building in for their support. 
  • Work along side your local Crime Prevention Unit within the Police Department –
  • Sign a Tempe Police Authority to Arrest for Trespass form.
  • Fill out an Operation Notification form and post the sticker in a visible area.
  • Contractors should keep excellent records, have after-hour contacts, and be willing to prosecute.  

Post signs

  • “Private Property”
  • “Security Cameras in Use”
  • “No Trespassing”
  • Post signs that vehicles may be searched.
  • Contractor’s and builder’s contact information.
  • Rewards Program Signs – Use on gates, buildings, perimeter fencing, tool sheds, and job trailers.
  • Reward Decals – These highly visible decals can be used on gang boxes, trailers, small equipment, storage sheds, and large tools.
  • Surveillance Cameras –  The idea of being caught on video is a great deterrent to theft.
  • Cost effective
  • IP Surveillance systems – • Can be transferred from one jobsite to the next.  • Video streams are transferred to any location in the world using a standard PC.    May include motion detection and two-way audio. 
  • Remote accessibility – Can be linked to a website to give the public the ability to view the progress of a project.
  • Increase possibility of apprehension – When properly used they do result in deterrence, detection, and prosecution.
  • Security and Safety – Monitoring worksites can also be used to spot unsafe working conditions and/or procedures. 

Access Control –  Contractors need to take extra precautions to secure their construction sites.

  • Change the padlocks on the gates and around the site several times during the construction.  You never who or how many people have keys.
  • Use a chain link fence to secure the perimeter of the site.
  • Walk the perimeter of the site and check for breaches where someone could enter the site, then repair it.
  • Have someone check out the site several times over the weekend.
  1. Secure storage sheds with good locks. 
  2. Install locks as soon as possible.
  3. Challenge strangers on your property or job sites. Show them you are on the alert.  
  4. Keep entrances and gates to a minimum.  Lock gates when you are done for the day.
  5. Use a reputable Security Guard company.
  6. Wear identification badges with companies’ logo.
  7. include employee search clause in contracts.
  8. If you store equipment keys on a key board, have someone take the keyboard home.

Equipment Security

Mark It!


    • Mark your equipment, metal pipe and moveable property. i.e. weld business name on property.
    • Utilize the driver’s license number of a principal in the firm preceded by “AZ”.
    • Put numbers in two spots: hidden and obvious.
    • Paint your larger equipment a distinctive color and include your name or logo.  Paint tools all the same color.
    • Paint the last six digits of the Product Identification Number (PIN) on the roof.


Die Stamp:   Permanently mark tools and equipment with the blow of a hammer.  Electric engravers can also be used.


  • Record It!


    • Inventory equipment frequently and store it so it is obvious if something is missing.
    • Keep records. Record serial numbers and numbers you applied.
    • Take color photos.


  • Protect It!


    • Re-key your equipment – most construction equipment is commonly keyed.   
    • Do not leave equipment in remote areas.
    • Install anti-theft devices: fuel cutoffs, hydraulic bypasses, track locks or alarms.
    • Keep equipment and supplies locked up in a securable storage shed.
    • Use locking gas caps and oil caps on equipment and vehicles.  Lock cabs.
    • Disable vehicles with hidden switches.
    • Cluster equipment. Plan to end the day with near empty tanks.
    • Keep equipment and supplies locked up in a securable storage shed.
    • Remove the keys from large equipment and vehicles.
    • Install GPS in large construction vehicles left on site.

Communicate – 

  • Talk to your new neighbors because they could be potential witnesses of future crimes.
  • Advise local homeowners and businesses owners of contractors contact information.
  • Offer rewards to citizens and employees.  Use the Silent Witness program.
  • •Create partnerships with home owners in partially completed subdivision.
  • Utilize an employee rewards programs – reward for not allowing crimes to occur.

Miscellaneous –

  • Conduct criminal background checks on all staff, contractors, sub-trades, and security guards.
  • Zero tolerance policy on internal theft and allowing theft to occur.
  • Security Guards should be visible and if possible use a marked trailer.
  • Just-in-time delivery – install appliances at end of the job.
  • Copper – theft of this metal is very high.  Secure all metals and if possible install at the end of the job.

Data from : –


One thought on “Friday Tool Box Talk- Construction Theft

  1. To help protect my toolbox. What are some ways to locks the wheels in order to keep someone from pushing it right unto a trailer and taking off with it.

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