Guide: Construction Job Site Security Cameras
It’s the middle of the night. No one’s around except for a couple of people lingering around. Your job site security cameras capture them as they peer through your construction site’s fencing. The system quickly alerts a remote guard that would-be criminals are lurking about. Within seconds—via the camera’s two-way audio—the guard warns: “Please vacate the property.”
The thieves leave. The following day, when you and others report to work, everything is where you left it.
The above scenario isn’t a work of science fiction. Companies around the country are already using this state-of-the-art technology to improve their construction site security. In this guide, you’ll discover the benefits of the newest job site security cameras to hit the market, their features, and how to tell if they’re right for your needs.
Before we get to all of that, however, let’s dive into why you’ll want to protect your construction site with security cameras in the first place.
How Prevalent Is Construction Site Theft?
Here’s a cautionary tale: In Philadelphia in January 2023, thieves broke through a protective fence at a construction site and stole $60,000 worth of equipment, all within an hour. Though security cameras filmed the beginning of the crime, these older models lacked the technology needed to alert a guard. As a result, within minutes, the thieves disconnected them before hauling off tens of thousands of dollars in goods.
According to the National Equipment Register (NER), construction site thefts collectively add up to $1 billion in stolen goods annually. NER facilitates information sharing with insurers, equipment owners, and law enforcement. The organization pegs the average cost of a single instance of equipment theft at $30,000.
Highly coveted items include:
- Copper wire and scrap metal
- Doors and windows
- Plumbing supplies and fixtures
Thieves don’t just hit big construction sites. They also target houses under construction, stealing stoves, dishwashers, light fixtures, lighting, bathroom vanities, doorbells, you name it. Nothing is off limits, with boxes of tile, circular saws, and table saws all walking away from sites.
Why Are Construction Sites So Vulnerable?
In addition to being unattended, construction sites are relatively easy to break into, especially at night. A pair of wire cutters are all thieves need to circumvent protective fencing.
On top of that, the potential take is high value.
Finally, thieves are rarely caught because the equipment can be challenging to trace. It’s estimated that the recovery rate for cars is 60%. But for construction site equipment, it’s only about 7-22%, according to an analysis done by East Tennessee State University.
Security Steps for Construction Sites
Some of the best practices for construction site security 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)
Yet an East Tennessee State University analysis concluded: “These practices… may not be sufficient—especially for expensive theft targets.”
That’s why job site security cameras are so essential. Not only do they help authorities to identify thieves after the fact, but the best, newest cameras can also prevent thefts from happening in the first place.
Types of Job Site Security Cameras
When securing your site with cameras, you have two main types to choose from.
Wireless Job Site Security Cameras
Wireless security cameras connect remotely to a recording device. Some types are 100% wire-free, using long-life batteries to keep them charged. Others use a wire to connect the camera to an electric outlet. Still others offer a hybrid solution, running primarily on rechargeable batteries. Most wireless options are relatively easy to install, making them ideal for homes and small businesses.
For construction companies working on short-term projects like housing development, wireless security options offer flexibility. They’re easy to relocate and don’t need existing electrical to set up. As job sites change, so can your video security solution.
PoE Job Site Security Cameras
That stands for Power-over-Ethernet. A PoE camera system uses an ethernet cable for lightning-fast network access and electric power. Though they usually require a professional to install, these cameras are ideal for warehouses and commercial properties.
These types of solutions are better suited for longer-term projects like urban and commercial development. If your company is working in this area, you should consider outfitting each site with a PoE solution in the early stages of development to ensure no lost budget to material and tool theft.
Modern Security Camera Features that Benefit Construction Sites
In addition to the two main types of cameras mentioned above, newer cameras have several value-added features that do way more than capture thieves in the act. Some of these features can stop crimes before they take place.
Night-vision: This technology lets cameras capture a clear picture in low and no-light environments. Others come with motion-activated flood lights.
High-definition color night vision: In the event that thieves manage to take something from your site, these cameras offer clear, in-color footage that helps police to track down the crooks.
Artificial intelligence: Cameras with this technology can distinguish between a human intruder and local wildlife, cars, or other harmless objects. When AI cameras detect a threat, they stream the video feed to a human via high-speed internet within seconds.
2-way audio: Cameras equipped with this feature allow you (or a hired guard) to talk directly to potential thieves, scaring them off.
Live construction site security monitoring: If your cameras merely film a crime in progress, they’re not much of a deterrent. On the other hand, if a live guard warns thieves and alerts authorities within seconds, you increase the chances that your site will remain intact.
Modern Video Monitoring Is Key to Job Site Security
Finding the right job site security cameras for your construction sites can help prevent theft after hours. At Deep Sentinel, we pride ourselves on being on the cutting edge of security camera and video monitoring solutions. Both our wireless and PoE security cameras come with all the modern features listed above to ensure your job sites stay safe and free of theft.
Take the first step to getting total after-hours security coverage over your construction site. Contact Deep Sentinel about construction site security solutions by calling 833.983.6006.