How Video Monitoring Affects Construction Insurance Premiums
You likely know your homeowner’s insurance gives you a discount if you install a security system. Why? Insurance underwriters know that criminals are less likely to target homes with security systems in place—meaning less risk. The same thinking applies to construction insurance for job sites. In this case, however, video monitoring can be even more beneficial than an alarmed security system—helping to lower the risk of various insurance payouts.
As a result, adding monitored construction site security cameras can help you save money on insurance premiums. That includes general liability, worker’s compensation, tools and equipment insurance, and builder’s insurance. On top of lowering premiums, you’ll also save on deductibles, lost work time, overtime, and more.
How Live Monitoring Lowers Construction Insurance Costs
Below, we explore three ways monitored cameras can benefit your bottom line.
#1: Reduces Worksite Theft
According to industry reports, a construction site is much more likely to experience theft than any other risk or threat, including vandalism, fire damage, or natural disaster.
Construction sites house plenty of high-value, easy-to-fence items. A set of fence cutters is all thieves often need to access a site after hours. Though unmonitored cameras might film them in the act, that’s where the benefit ends. With no one watching the feed, the criminals have plenty of time to take what they want. The National Equipment Register puts the value of stolen equipment every year between $300 million (residential sites) and $1 billion (commercial sites).
How Video Monitoring Can Help: Thieves are lazy. As the insurance company Northbridge has written, “A building site without construction surveillance is like a house without locks on the doors: not everyone will test the doorknob, but those looking to swipe some valuables will welcome the lack of resistance.”
As a result, video monitoring can reduce your construction insurance premiums for several types of coverage, including overall builder’s insurance, auto insurance, and tools and equipment insurance. It can also drive down what you pay before your deductible kicks in. On top of that, fewer thefts mean less lost work time.
#2: Reduces Worksite Injuries
If you’re wondering why worker’s comp and employer liability premiums keep rising, the following statistics shed some light.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 345 people died on construction sites in 2020—the highest fatality count in five years. Another 21,400 were injured due to falls or trips. On top of that, the incidence rate for nonfatal work injuries related to exposure to harmful substances increased from 450 in 2019 to 1,500 in 2020.
You obviously can’t change the overall safety stats for the whole country, but you can affect the safety numbers for your business—and that can help you save big.
How Video Monitoring Can Help: Monitored cameras help spot unsafe conditions before they become a liability. If you check the footage yourself, you’ll see it on the feeds if employees aren’t wearing PPE when they should be, for example. Similarly, you’ll notice unsafe work practices or areas before it’s too late. Plus, workers who know someone is watching are less likely to break the safety rules.
All of this can help drive down the number of accidents on your site, reducing your overall risk. That means your premiums for worker’s comp and liability will be lower. It can also reduce how often you’re sued and what you’re paying out in deductibles. You’ll also be less likely to have business interruptions or pay out overtime to cover for injured employees.
#3: Reduces Worker’s Comp Fraud
Slips and falls are among the most common types of worksite injuries in construction.
Unfortunately, unscrupulous people know this and take advantage of it. Dishonest employees will fake injuries to reap paid time off and big insurance payouts, and some lawyers are only too happy to help them do it.
According to The Hartford insurance underwriting company, worker’s comp fraud adds up to $30 billion annually.
How Video Monitoring Can Help: Worker’s comp insurers know that video monitoring leads to video evidence. Workers know that, too. Monitored video systems not only catch fraudsters in the act but also deter them from committing fraud in the first place. And, in the event of a claim, you have footage to back up your side of the story.
Video Monitoring Brings Insurance Costs Under Control
With a video monitoring solution, you can begin to control the costs associated with theft, injuries, and worker’s comp fraud.
In addition to all the benefits above, your insurer will likely reward you for new or improved security measures. Installing security cameras on your construction sites could result in 5% to 20% discounts on construction insurance rates. These discounts depend on many variables including carrier, lot size, area, and crime risk, but the point is a video monitoring system could pay for itself and then some.
If you are considering a video monitoring solution, speak with your insurance agent to see how it can affect your insurance costs.
How to Protect Your Site
Your builder’s risk insurance policy likely requires you to have a “reasonable level of security” on your site. Precisely what that means can vary by location. For example, if you’re in a high-crime area or your site has already been plagued by crime, you might need more security than a site in a lower-crime area. Some best practices for construction site security and safety include:
- Surrounding easier-to-steal small equipment with larger, harder-to-move equipment
- Installing warning signs, security fencing, and lighting
- Marking tools (to make them easier to trace if stolen)
- Promoting worksite safety awareness and education
- Offering PPE and ensuring employees use it correctly
- Maintaining a clean, organized site that is clear of debris
- Inspecting the site regularly for safety hazards
- Inspecting and maintaining vehicles
On top of the above, video monitoring is a necessity. However, not all video monitoring solutions are created equal.
Superior Video Monitoring for Construction Sites
Older security camera models simply record. That means you get footage of a crime. That footage can potentially help law enforcement catch the crooks, but it doesn’t fully deter them from targeting your site in the first place.
Newer, advanced security camera monitoring solutions have built-in artificial intelligence that watches over your job site. The AI security camera technology dismisses non-threats like stray animals but notifies a live guard of suspicious behavior within seconds. The guard then assesses the situation, engages with the suspect via 2-way audio built into the camera, and notifies the police of a verified crime if necessary.
That’s the advanced video monitoring solution that Deep Sentinel offers. Deep Sentinel is the only provider that offers zero false alarms and prevention before the crime occurs.
Want better construction site security? Call Deep Sentinel at 833.983.6006.