Contractors: Theft prevention starts with good record-keeping

Tens of millions of dollars’ worth of equipment and tools are stolen each year in Canada and this statistic continues to soar. Construction companies and contractors know that heavy equipment and tools can be easy to steal, easy to sell, and has a low recovery rate – often being shipped out of the province or out of the country within hours.

The cost of replacing the stolen equipment is not the only consequence of theft. Delays in completion of the project due to the loss of specific or unique equipment can increase project costs and trigger late penalties. Additionally, you, the contractor, may be held liable if the stolen equipment causes damages persons or property.

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Having a current inventory and detailed records of all equipment (and tools) used on project sites, is an instrumental element to recovery and management.

Records should include:


  • Serial numbers & product identification
  • Make & model
  • Year built
  • Date purchased and value/cost
  • Markings, logos and location of any details that help with identification
  • Photos


  • Date of purchase
  • Description
  • Photos

Keeping an up-to-date record of equipment and tools is just the first step of your overall theft management program. Depending on the value of the tools and equipment you own, you’ll likely need to implement a number of additional security measures to protect your property.