The introduction of the Equipment Theft Prevention Bill highlights the critical importance of comprehensive site perimeter protection in combatting equipment theft on construction sites.
What is the Equipment Theft Prevention Bill?
Under the Equipment Theft Prevention Bill, compliance regulations may require the installation of anti-theft devices and unique identifiers on equipment. These requirements will apply to mechanically propelled vehicles with an engine capacity of at least 250 cubic centimetres, as well as other equipment primarily used in agricultural or commercial activities.
While the specific penalties for non-compliance are yet to be finalised, failure to adhere to the regulations will likely result in fines.
The government has the flexibility to outline the details and implementation through secondary legislation, allowing for adjustments and updates to address evolving security needs in the construction industry.
This legislation aims to curb theft and resale of tools and equipment used in various industries and it also serves as a wake-up call for companies to invest in robust security measures.
How does the Bill relate to the construction industry?
Before the introduction of the Equipment Theft Prevention Bill, construction site theft was not specifically targeted by existing laws. The Theft Act 1968 and the Criminal Damage Act 1971 provided general coverage but did not adequately address the unique challenges faced by construction sites.
There is a rising number of thefts occurring on construction sites across the UK, showing the need for enhanced security measures. A survey conducted by the Chartered Institute of Building revealed that 92% of construction companies have been directly affected by petty crime, with 21% experiencing site robberies on a weekly basis.
The cost of theft and vandalism in the UK construction industry has reached an alarming £800 million per year. It is not just large equipment that is targeted, as more than £100 million worth of tools have been stolen in the country over the past two years.
Given the urgency of the problem and the time it will take for the legislation to take effect, site managers must prioritise professional options for site perimeter protection. With the immense pressure placed on Police, there is a shared responsibility to provide the utmost protection and implement proactive strategies to tackle this growing problem.
Says Jamie Allam, CEO Amthal: “While we welcome this new legislation, every site manager should be proactive in seeking out companies that offer site perimeter protection. Without basic protection from a trusted partner, construction sites will remain frequent targets for criminals, irrespective of the law. Amthal’s team is here to offer the necessary support, guidance and peace of mind to ensure sites are monitored and maintained, in compliance with the latest legislation.”
The Equipment Theft Prevention Bill serves as a catalyst for heightened security awareness in the construction industry. By investing in reliable site perimeter protection and collaborating with reputable security providers, companies can proactively safeguard their sites, protect their assets, and contribute to reducing theft incidents.
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