23rd January, 2014

Protect your tools from theft on site

As a builder, tradesperson or contractor, the tools you use can often be the difference between earning a living and unemployment so it’s important to keep them protected.

Tens of thousands of dollars worth of quality tools and equipment accumulated over the years can be gone in a matter of minutes at the hands of an opportunistic thief.

According to a 2002 study from the Australian Institute of Criminology, 39 per cent of residential builders are affected by theft or vandalism each year.

In particular, 19 per cent experienced theft alone, while 7 per cent encountered vandalism and 13 per cent were affected by both.

Additionally, of those who had been affected by these loss-causing events, 65 per cent experienced more than one incident each year.

The report also found that at least 23 per cent of the builders and businesses affected by theft or vandalism were not insured.

This means almost a quarter of those who experienced loss of tools or damage to their equipment were forced to cover the expense of replacing these vital materials from their own pockets.

In order to protect equipment and tools from theft, it is recommended to store these items safely at all times.

Many thefts occur when tools are left in the back of a vehicle on a worksite. Builders and businesses can reduce the risk of theft by transferring this equipment into a secure lockup or keeping it in sight when not in use.

Additionally, if theft or vandalism does occur, builders are advised to make sure they hold comprehensive trades insurance.

A Tools of Trade or General Property policy will cover the expense of replacement in the event of theft.

However, it is crucial you understand the difference in rules and restrictions that may apply between insurance policies.

You can ensure you hold the right policy at the right time by working Trade Insurance, an insurance broker who specialises in the insurance needs and requirements of tradespeople in Australia.

Author: Murray Bruce