How much do you leave on a job site when your crew packs up at the end of the night? While it’s unlikely that you leave your most expensive equipment, many job sites have a fair amount of materials around that could be tempting to thieves. To combat this, some contractors choose to set up security cameras around the job site to deter would-be thieves. If you’re not sure whether this tactic is right to secure your job sites, here are a few things to consider.
Job Site Theft
First of all, stop and think about what you have on the job site that might be of interest to a thief. While most contractors take high-cost items like generators, power tools and air compressors back and forth with them, depending on your setup there’s a chance that you might have other equipment that’s left on site. You may also have ladders, scaffolding and other stationary equipment that isn’t worth as much but that would certainly be a setback to lose.
On top of this, think about the materials themselves that you use on the job. Metals, in particular, can be a target for would-be thieves, especially if you have copper wiring that’s going to be installed in the walls. In some instances, even wires that have already gone in are potential theft targets if they’re easy enough to get to.
Cameras as a Deterrent
One reason that some use cameras at the job site is the deterrent value that cameras offer. Having cameras prominently located, especially if they are elevated enough to be out of easy reach, can cause would-be thieves to think twice about hitting your job site. Some contractors have even been known to place fake security cameras on job sites along with signs that the site was under surveillance to take advantage of this deterrent effect without the cost of functional security cameras.
Cameras as Evidence
If someone does rob your site, having working cameras in place can be a good way to provide evidence to the police that may assist with their investigation. Of course, the usefulness of cameras as evidence depends significantly on the quality of the cameras and where they were placed. To better identify suspects, the police needs clear images and video that makes it easy to see the intruder’s face and clothing. Having multiple cameras to watch the job site from different angles may help them to identify a vehicle used by a thief as well.
What Type of Camera to Use?
Should you decide that the deterrent effect and potential to produce evidence for the police warrants jobsite cameras, you need to figure out what type of camera you want to use. Some contractors use trail cams designed for use by hunters as they are designed for use at night and only activate when motion is present. Others use conventional security cameras or smart cameras that can be accessed remotely from a computer or smart device.
Regardless of the type of camera you choose, make sure it’s capable of capturing pictures or video in high definition. Since most jobsite cameras will operate at night, opt for a model that features infrared lighting or some similar night use mode to ensure that you can get clear imagery. With any luck, you won’t actually need them – but picking the right type will ensure that you get the most benefit out of them if you do.
Have you ever used a camera around one of your job sites to help keep things secure?