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Today's reality: Security on the jobsite

Category: Build-Remodel-Topics

Do not ignore safeguarding your sites; it is today’s reality



by Tim Peterson, OECS Vice President of Operations

This is a topic that wasn’t really discussed much when I started in this industry 26 years ago. Security was basically closing the door, turning off the lights and making sure the jobsite trailer was locked. Well, today is a different world. I recently spoke to a contractor that told me it is one of the top topics of discussion. 

So many questions arise when discussing security.

Do you need cameras, fencing, security onsite or a monitoring system?

Does the site need 24/7 protection?

Do you need constant eyes on you site to protect your jobsite, tools, and materials?

The questions leave us asking where to start. It should begin in the bid process. Consider what is needed for security and protection and build that into the cost of the project. Think of it as looking at that site from the outside in and how a perpetrator could break in. What measures can be taken to protect your jobsite, equipment, tools and most importantly your workers.


Is that adding fencing, extra lighting both in the building and outside, and cameras (that can show you the entire jobsite 24/7). In the past, the camera was to show the population, owners, or investors the progress of the job. Today it’s for your protection and liability.

From my experience, make sure your chemicals are locked in a room or gang box, ladders are taken down and secured to prevent usage (a chain and lock or secured to a stud wall). Don’t forget about your electrical cords, we recently heard of a jobsite that was broke into and all they stole was every electrical cord.

As the jobsite progresses, the security will more than likely have to change. You may not start out with an onsite person but due to complexity and items now in the building, it may be necessary. Whether it is a commercial site or residential site, security is a MUST and no longer an option.

Always ensure security does not get missed in the bid process and talk with your insurance carrier for their requirements and who’s liable or responsible. General contractors or contract managers, confirm that your subcontractors have a security plan in place, it may not be complicated, but does it protect the equipment, tools and materials?  

There are some very good and affordable systems available. Ask for demonstrations to make sure it will provide what you need. Bottom line is do not ignore security, it is today’s reality. Plan to protect from the unexpected.

For more information or assistance, contact OECS.

OECS’s full name is OSHA + Environmental Compliance Systems, but they are NOT OSHA. Their experts are here to help you comply, keep your crew safe and avoid fines. Plain and simple. HBA of F-M has a partnership with OECS offering discounted services to members.