A Guide to Construction Site Security

Updated May 3, 2017 . AmFam Team

When it comes to protecting your business, it’s important to build a construction site security plan that works. Here are some guidelines to get you started. 

When it comes to protecting your business, equipment and employees while on the job, it’s important to take construction site security seriously. And, although each job site will present unique situations and risks, there are some basic practices you can implement to help prevent major crime or losses.

Here are some ideas to help guide you in building a construction site security plan that works for your business:

Generally Good Practices

  • Establish a written Security Policy for the site.
  • Develop a specific job site security plan.
  • Assign supervisory security responsibilities.
  • Encourage security awareness among all workers.
  • Contact the police and fire departments before starting a job to establish cooperative efforts for site security.
  • Establish contact with management of adjoining properties - encourage them to report suspicious activities on the site.
  • Require prompt reporting by workers of incidents of theft and vandalism.<
  • Report all losses to the police immediately.
  • Maintain complete records of all security incidents.
  • Become involved with local groups or associations working to prevent construction-site theft and vandalism.

Safety While on the Site

  • When possible, enclose the job site with a security fence.
  • Provide nighttime lighting of the site.
  • Provide limited access to the site at all times, preferably with lockable gates.
  • Maintain a clear zone adjacent to fencing.
  • Post warning signs to help keep unauthorized persons off the site.
  • Use only high quality locks – never leave keys in locks or leave locks in an open position.
  • Inspect the site at the end of each day before securing it, to assure nothing has been compromised.
  • Provide parking areas outside of the site for employees and visitors.
  • Consider the use of security guards, and have them patrol the site on designated rounds. Provide all security guards with a means of communication.
  • Consider limiting vehicle access to the site to one designated entrance through which all vehicle traffic flows.
  • Consider installing a portable CCTV monitoring system to capture vehicle traffic entering and exiting the site.

Safeguarding your Equipment, Tools and Materials

  • Consider utilizing a secured area within the site for equipment storage (e.g., storage trailers or sheds in secured areas).
  • Maintain an inventory control system for all equipment, tools, and materials. Include photographs of equipment and expensive tools. Establish a program for verifying all deliveries.
  • Mark all tools and equipment in a conspicuous, distinctive manner to allow for easy identification.
  • Consider registering high value equipment with IRONwatch (Opens in a new tab) or HELPtech (Opens in a new tab) to improve the likelihood of recovery if you are the victim of heavy equipment theft.
  • Implement a check-out system for all tools and equipment. Post a sign stating, “ATTENTION! ALL TOOLS MUST BE SIGNED OUT.”
  • Keep tools securely locked in storage trailers or sheds in secured areas.
  • Stamp all heavy equipment and attachments with an ID number. Provide warning signs on equipment indicating that ID numbers are recorded.
  • Establish a supervisory key control program for motorized equipment.
  • Lock all equipment cabs during non-working hours.
  • Immobilize equipment by disabling it or using anti-theft/anti-vandalism devices.
  • Lock oil and gas tank caps, where possible, as a means of deterring vandalism.
  • Park equipment centrally in a well-lit, secure area.
  • Provide a secure storage area for target building materials.
  • Keep the on-site inventory of materials to a minimum.
  • Store equipment, materials, and tools away from perimeter fencing.
  • Remove equipment and materials from the site when no longer needed – do not use the site for storage.
  • Carefully supervise all trash removal from the site.

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