3 effects of building site theft – and the insurance cover you need

Construction site theft is an unfortunately common occurrence in the industry – sector estimates indicate that in any given year, nearly two in five construction companies nationwide will have suffered from some form of onsite theft. This could be in the form of stolen tools or equipment, misuse of company vehicles or property, or theft that affects productivity and output.

Site managers all over Australia should be aware of the negative consequences that can come with the theft or misuse of vehicles, equipment or tools, and be prepared to minimise these issues with the correct insurance policies and covers. Here are three of the most severe effects of building site theft – and the perfect insurance cover you need in response.

In any given year, 20 per cent of Australian construction companies will suffer from onsite theft.

3 effects of building site theft

1) Increased cost of replacement equipment

The National Equipment Register estimates that around $650 million worth of high-cost construction equipment is stolen each year. This obviously requires a significant investment from building companies to replace, especially if project managers haven't ensured that the equipment is covered by the right insurance policy. In addition, these figures don't account for the cost of smaller items, such as tools, keys and more portable equipment. Considering these additional incidents of theft, the costs could run into the billions.

Costs can quickly stack up if you keep having to replace costly stolen equipment.Expenses can quickly stack up if you keep having to replace costly stolen equipment.

2) Lowered productivity

The costs of replacing equipment and vehicles that have been stolen or misused in the middle of a construction project don't take into account a loss of productivity. The equipment used in major building projects is often highly specialised, rented on spec or not readily available in the Australian market. This means when high-value vehicles and equipment are stolen, construction managers need to spend hours sourcing and arranging for replacements to ensure the building project can continue.

As well as setting construction behind schedule, this means you need to continue paying staff wages while they're unable to work to their full efficiency.

3) Higher insurance premiums

Although many specialised construction projects will have some form of insurance covering worker injuries and equipment breakdown, protecting against theft isn't always as much of a concern for project managers. As such, if you're robbed and you speak to an insurance provider to get the rest of your equipment and vehicles covered, premiums will likely be higher as your building site will have a record of criminal theft.

Businesses cover themselves for fire damage - so why not theft too?Businesses cover themselves for fire damage – so why not theft too?

What insurance policy do I need for my construction project?

When looking for insurance cover for your construction site, it's important to source your policy from experts in the building industry. Tailored construction insurance is vital as no two building projects are the same. Typical policies cover anything from:

  • Natural disasters;
  • Fire damage;
  • Vandalism;
  • And theft.

An average of $650 million worth of high-cost construction equipment is stolen every year.

However, an expert provider should also be able to discuss customised insurance options that consider the unique conditions of your build. For example, provisions can be made to cover small items such as tools and portable machinery, both on-site and in-transit. Similarly, you can look for coverage for structures such as site sheds and cabins that may be affected by thievery.

Take some time to think about every item on your construction site that may be of value, compile a detailed list of these items and the kind of insurance cover you require. Then, all you need to do is contact experts in construction insurance like Trans-West.

If your building site has been affected by thievery before, or for any additional information about the kinds of construction industry policies we provide, contact the Trans-West Insurance team today.

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