Best Practices

Tips on Theft Prevention for Your Jobsites and Equipment

There are many proactive steps you can take when it comes to theft prevention of heavy equipment. The National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) estimates annual losses from heavy equipment theft are as high as $1 billion. Unfortunately, there are many costs associated with theft including equipment replacement, short term rentals, lost time dealing with law enforcement and adjusters, increased labor costs due to downtime, and penalties that could be incurred if a project is delayed.

At Heavy Machines, we’ve provided these tips, so you can learn how to avoid machine theft by increasing jobsite security and equipment security.

Theft Prevention through Jobsite Security

Enclose the Site with Fencing

  • Secure fencing around the jobsite—Use fencing that is see through material such as chain link, so trespassers can be seen.
  • Fences should be at least 8 feet high with posts. The posts should be spaced no greater than the width of the narrowest unit in the fleet, so it would be difficult to move the machine between these posts.
  • Use barbed wire or razor tape at the top of fences.
  • Conduct routine fence inspections, and repair any damage immediately.

Use Warning Signs

  • Post “Warning” or “No Trespassing” signs around the perimeter of your jobsite. Outline the laws that will be broken and the penalties enforced if ignored.
  • Register each unit on the national database used by law enforcement. Add a decal warning, so thieves can see that the equipment is registered.

Put up Gates

  • Gates should have a padlock permanently attached to the fence.
  • If possible, have only one entrance/exit to the site.

Lots of Lighting

  • Place lights along the border of the property.
  • Aim lights into the worksite.
  • Conduct routine lighting inspections. Promptly change light bulbs as soon as they go out.

Deter Theft through Equipment Security

Clearly Mark Equipment

  • Have a welder engrave your company name on all equipment.

Anchor Equipment

  • Secure unattended on-site equipment with a chain or cable.
  • Paint the chains a bright color as an added deterrent.

Immobilize and Track Equipment

  • Remove the hitch on towed equipment or trailers.
  • Remove the tires on equipment that’s not used regularly.
  • Install theft prevention devices that disable fuel, hydraulic and/or electrical systems on higher value equipment.
  • Consider removing the wires and/or the battery on larger equipment.
    Install a GPS tracking device on equipment.
  • Utilize security features provided by manufacturers. Link-Belt’s RemoteCARE provides 24 hour surveillance and geofencing capabilities at no extra cost. Hitachi offers ConSite, maintenance technology to manage your fleet.

Increase the Odds of Recovering Stolen Equipment

Be prepared if your equipment is stolen. Reduce downtime and keep accurate records to help aid a police investigation. You’ll increase the odds of recovering stolen equipment if you follow these tips for reliable record keeping.

Keep Records Up to Date

  • Maintain detailed and accurate inventory of all equipment on a worksite. Record the year, manufacturer, model number, and serial number.
  • Take photos of all units from each side and update photos as needed.
  • Record all modifications like paint color which can be reported to the police if it’s necessary to confirm machine identification and proof of ownership.
  • Register your equipment on a national database that works with law enforcement, such as the National Equipment Register, also known as NER.

Heavy Machines is headquartered in Memphis with additional locations serving Tennessee, Alabama, Louisiana, Georgia, and Maine. Our team is ready to serve your heavy equipment needs at our Tennessee location and all of our other locations. We have an extensive fleet of heavy equipment for sale and rent in Tennessee  and at all of our other locations.