Break-ins and thefts of materials and machinery continue to occur across construction sites, despite a government push to make it more difficult for thieves to sell stolen metals. Unsurprisingly, reports have suggested that construction site theft cost the industry £800 million last year.
This is why it’s critical that you prioritise site security and install a dependable, high-quality CCTV system. Not only will construction CCTV combat crime, but it will also provide a number of additional advantages. Read on to find out how you can benefit from CCTV on your construction site…
Why Construction CCTV Is Important
CCTV cameras serve to prevent and reduce criminal behaviour. Having them on your construction site makes you less likely to be targeted, reducing your chance of experiencing site theft and vandalism.
Crime knows no bounds and can impact any type of construction site. Theft and vandalism are all security issues that can occur on construction sites. Especially in the current climate where material shortages are driving up the costs, making simple items such as bags of cement are worth in some cases two or three times their normal price.
And burglaries can be significant roadblocks, resulting in losses in terms of property damage, increased project expenses by putting it on hold for several weeks, slowed business growth, and negative work and customer experience.
Criminals may be deterred from attempting theft and vandals from destroying valuable property “simply for fun” if there are CCTV cameras on site.
Why You Should Consider Construction CCTV
There are several reasons why CCTV is so important on construction sites. Before you invest in a CCTV system, think about why you need it, what assets it’s supposed to safeguard, and how long you need it to work.
Here are some reasons why you should consider Construction CCTV for your site…
Remote Monitoring And Site Management
Installing construction site CCTV allows you to see your project development throughout the day.
Construction sites are busy with activity, making it difficult for managers to keep track of everything that’s going on.
As site managers, you must rely on reports from your team if there is no security system in place. Alternatively, you might have to spend hours walking around your workplace to figure out what your staff are up to.
Both strategies are inherently unreliable and can consume a significant amount of your time. However, with the installation of construction CCTV cameras, controlling the building site becomes a much easier task and can be done from your phone.
Health And Safety During Your Project
All construction sites should adhere to health and safety laws and guidelines, but even so, accidents can still happen. When accidents occur, you need to create the relevant reports. CCTV provides clear images you can then use to understand exactly what happened on-site and what action you need to take – if any.
This also helps in cases of non-compliance if any accidents result in legal action. By implementing CCTV on your construction site, you can also use the footage to further make improvements to your health and safety policies.
Project Construction Progress
Another advantage for site managers is that CCTV gives you a better perspective of the entire construction site’s progress. You can use CCTV footage, as well as gadgets like drones, to evaluate whether you need more resources to finish a project.
Even though you may still need to visit the site for a thorough inspection, CCTV cameras are still essential as they provide footage of how events at the site have progressed.
Here, you can also manage time that’s spent, attendance of your staff and how productive the staff are in comparison to the completion date.
Collect Evidence Against Crime
Criminals intent on stealing materials or machinery from building sites will overlook even the most powerful deterrents, which can leave you feeling helpless.
A visible CCTV system, on the other hand, is still beneficial as long as it produces a high-quality image. If theft happens, this offers the means to catch the perpetrators involved and the lengths they’re going to break into your site.
An effective security system with construction CCTV will aid in determining the location of the break-in. You can use the footage to ensure that the police have all they need to catch the intruder and bring them to justice.
Traditional CCTV Systems
Traditionally you’d have a CCTV and a PIR detector, which is an external detector that would be next to the camera.
The camera then would look at this area and the detector would then be aligned to look at the same area. If someone breaks in when they walk in front of the detector, it starts the alarm and opens a relay up to start the alert event and automatically sends the video image off to the ARC (alarm receiving centre).
However, the downsides to traditional detector operated CCTV systems are that if there is extreme or adverse weather including strong wind, for example, it’ll set off the CCTV and create a false alarm.
The biggest problem however is if the detector gets knocked either accidentally or intentionally and ends up facing in a different direction to where the CCTV camera is focused, if the detector notices some movement, the camera may not capture it, possibly giving the remote operator a clear image when an intruder is actually on site.
Monitored CCTV cameras using video analytics which avoids these issues.
Opting For Monitored Systems
As long as an internet connection is available, monitoring can be done remotely. Remote monitoring CCTV sends images from CCTV cameras to an external monitoring station – the ARC. These stations are designed to quickly respond to any suspicious activity to protect against intrusion, theft and property damage.
For any reason, if the ARC fails, there is a built-in redundancy where a second facility, will seamlessly handle all data, meaning that there is always someone responding to live events. And if there is a power cut, generators are used to ensure no data is lost.
You can be assured you’re getting a professional service because members are the ARC follows British Standards BS EN 50518.
Benefits Of Monitored CCTV For Your Construction Site
We are frequently bombarded with jargon-filled features and benefits, which can leave us even more confused than before.
Here are the benefits are broken down…
CCTV Alarm Triggers
Alarm ‘Triggers’ are CCTV cameras that have motion detection turned on, which is usually done with infrared detector technology.
An infrared trigger that detects simply movement is a ‘simple’ alternative, but a more advanced solution includes video analytics.
The human movement will be distinguished from ‘other’ movements, such as that of animals or birds, using video analytics technologies.
In the event of, say, a fox roaming your property at night, a CCTV camera with this ‘smarter’ analytic movement detecting technology will reduce false alarms, by filtering out events digitally.
One of the most common criticisms of construction site CCTV – and CCTV for any purpose – is that it records the crime on camera, only to be watched long after the act has occurred, and the harm has been done. The type of CCTV response processes used, on the other hand, maybe able to deter a thief or vandal.
The capacity to send an alert signal to a monitoring centre staffed by security professionals is an important aspect to highlight.
When a trigger alerts security staff to an occurrence, they can immediately view recently recorded or live video and issue audio warnings to intruders, summon key holders, deploy security officers, or request police assistance, as needed, and agreed with the client.
This security response is a professional service, especially if staff are not local to the office. The security response team are trained when it comes to the risks that might be involved, whereas your team might not be.
If CCTV systems are sold to British standard BS EN 8418 (which is a higher level of installation) you can get police response in event of a crime – this allows for the issue to get dealt with as soon as it occurs.
In-App Technology For Your Construction Site
The opportunity for stakeholders to view live footage of their site from the comfort of their own home is a lesser-known responsive feature worth mentioning.
This is possible thanks to an app that delivers high-definition, 24-hour coverage that you can use as long as you have a secure 4G or Wi-Fi connection.
This adds an extra degree of security and peace of mind, since portions of your site may be viewed at any time of day or night.
You may also add an ‘audio challenge’ to the app to keep intruders away from your site by using speakers built within it. “You’re invading a private location; please leave immediately or the cops will be contacted.”
The Alternative Solution To Security Guards
CCTV systems can work as alternatives to security guards and can protect your construction site for a fraction of the cost.
CCTV however can also be an additional and important benefit to security guards protecting a site with the added benefit of detector based CCTV to guide them to any potential break-ins, especially on large sites. The added vision will be improved as construction CCTV has, enhanced night vision with infrared capabilities.
CCTV is static but can be positioned higher up and can move as the construction project progresses, whilst this isn’t possible with security guards.
However, the ideal solution is a mixture of both, this is because monitored CCTV can be used as a backup and as evidence when capturing crime. The CCTV can also prompt guards to act fast in case of an emergency.
What Are The Different Static CCTV Systems Out There?
We offer a variety of monitored CCTV systems and services that are created and installed to actively defend your construction site from intruders 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
These range from long-life battery-operated systems for short-term sites without electricity to typical IP-based HD systems and movable self-powered solar HD Towers.
- Wireless SD 12-metre intruder detection cameras
- Suitable for small construction sites or developments without mains power
- Triggers are remotely verified and then escalated to security to investigate
- Available for short or long-term hire or outright purchase
- Wireless SD 35 metre intruder detection cameras
- 1-year battery power with own communication of camera footage
- Works well for medium or large demolition or construction sites without mains power
- Filters out false alarms with real threats escalated to security
- Allows for remote arm/disarm with live 30-day recording
VideoGUARD Ultra IP
- 80-metre range analytic defective HD CCTV camera
- Applicable for sites with main power and broadband/4G
- Remote monitored with audio-challenge and Police response options
- Home Office approved detection is more secure and is available
- Allows for remote arm/disarm with live 30-day recording
- Self-sufficient solar-powered CCTV tower with no site power needed
- Deployed to construction sites for next-day installation, nationwide
- 360 degree, 80-metre analytic detection range day or night and is remotely monitored when sites are closed
- Remotely monitored when sites are closed for immediate intruder alert
- Police response possible with the BS8418 certification
- HD images day and night with 30-day storage available to watch on mobile
Renting And Purchasing Opportunities
Purchasing a new CCTV system might be expensive. However, there are a few solutions, such as renting, to make it more manageable.
Renting allows you to spread the cost over a longer period of time, making it easier and cheaper. It also means you have a system exactly when you need it and throughout the duration of your site.
However, if you have a long-term project you can purchase the CCTV systems too.
With secure site construction CCTV, you’ll benefit from high-quality software that generates quality photos to ensure fewer things are going to go wrong on your site.
You’ll also receive a full permission system to ensure all blind spots are covered and your construction site is protected.
An effective CCTV system will allow you to spot any potential intrusions, respond quickly, and mitigate any incidents that could jeopardise your livelihood.
Better still, CCTV is normally less expensive than 24-hour manned security, which should be taken into account if you’re on a tight budget.
Don’t hesitate to contact an expert if you have any questions about your construction site CCTV alternatives.