Landscaping and equipment rental businesses have high-value machinery, along with quality trailers and trucks on site. Unfortunately, would-be thieves are no strangers to the value of these items.
On average, the cost of a stolen equipment item averages $17,400, according to CAT. Nationally, the average annual loss for businesses from equipment theft is over 400 million. On top of that, less than 25% of stolen equipment is ever recovered.
Not only are these items quick and easy to steal, but they are also easy to unload and sell for cash. They can also be sold without traceable documentation, or under the radar. In the dark of the night, landscaping equipment theft is an easy target for casual criminals.
Even when stowed away in an equipment yard, your landscaping equipment is at risk for theft. Often, thieves target sites with little surveillance and are able to evade apprehension. If you are the owner of a landscaping business, the thought of potential theft will keep you up at night.
Here are 5 security mistakes landscaping and equipment rental businesses should avoid:
1. Oblivious of theft trends
It is important to stay aware of theft trends within your industry and your business’s geographic location. Not only should you be protective of your entire fleet, but specifically the high-target theft items.
In the United States, catalytic converter theft is on the rise. According to NICB’s analysis and data, converter theft has increased 425.9% from 2019 to 2020. States with an overwhelming majority of theft occurrences are California, Texas, Minnesota, North Carolina, and Illinois.
The equipment that criminals will target depends on what is contained on the worksite vehicles. Equipment types needed for a job varies by geographic location. In the Northwest U.S. for instance, targeted theft includes trailers, skid steers, and snow-removal wheel loaders. Yet, in the Western region, backhoe theft has been on the rise.
Awareness of theft trends is the first step towards achieving successful theft prevention on your property.
2. Lost revenue from down trucks
Theft of catalytic converters, wheels, and other parts stolen from work trucks has significantly increased in 2020. Catalytic converter theft alone was up over 400% last year in the U.S.
Not only are these parts expensive to replace, but for every day the truck is down, revenue is lost since that truck is not operating. For example, our Sales Operations Analyst at AMAROK estimates for a landscaping client, that one of their trucks brings in on average up to $4,000 in revenue per day. Theft of several catalytic converters can quickly lead to substantial losses in revenue until they are fixed.
3. Lost efficiency preventing theft
Many landscapers want to leave their trucks and equipment out in the yard so that in the morning they can get in and head straight out to jobs. But, if there is a risk of theft, they unload the trucks each night to put equipment in the warehouse and load the trucks back up the next morning.
A recent analysis by AMAROK's found that for a particular client, at least 10 employees were spending one hour every day just moving equipment. These operational costs add up over time. Our internal study reveals that for a total of 10 employees involved in theft prevention measures, the Total Cost per Month for theft prevention is $5,002.50, with an Annual Total Cost of $60,030.00.
Depending on the volume of your fleet and equipment, this could be costing your business thousands of dollars. This results in more money spent to pay employees to handle this task. Plus, you are taking time and attention away from their other job responsibilities.
The solution? Deter criminals with an Electric Guard Dog Fence™ by AMAROK. Skip the hassle and lost time from pulling your equipment and fleet in and out of the yard so they don't sit out at night. Operating your business is challenging enough without having to worry about a monetary loss due to theft or vandalism. AMAROK’s layered perimeter security solutions stop crime before it happens.
Add a camera solution that integrates with our fence like FORTIFEYE. Combine remote video monitoring, video surveillance, and the power of the Electric Guard Dog Fence™. Quickly identify the would-be intruder and escalate the call with police from an alarm to an active crime. Thus, increasing your ability to apprehend the thief.
4. Not implementing a theft prevention plan
Putting a written prevention plan or protocol in place for employees is key. Some actionable steps you could take to improve your business's theft prevention plan are:
- Establish a written protocol for who handles what
- Put in place the use sign-out sheets
- Include a process to maintain detailed records of equipment and any identification numbers
- Put in place security training
- Require employee uniforms
Your employees will most likely not be theft experts. So, provide training for employees on how to spot suspicious activity and report it.
5. Not securing your fleet and equipment
In a study of stolen equipment, it was found that 48% of stolen equipment was less than five years old. This is even more reason to ensure that your storage area is secure. Thieves will steal anything they can carry or drive away with, including trucks, trailers, mowers, backhoes, hand tools, trees, shrubs, potted plants, sod, pavers, statuary, and garden furniture.
Criminals can’t steal your business assets if they can’t get to them. Keeping a thief off your property in the first place is why your best protection against theft is a secure perimeter.
Keep your profits growing with perimeter security solutions from AMAROK
Keeping things green and growing is the focus of your business. That should include your profits, as well. Don’t let theft trim your bottom line. Nip it in the bud with perimeter security solutions from AMAROK.
AMAROK’s security solutions get to the root of the matter, starting with The Electric Guard Dog™ solar-powered electric fence. The Electric Guard Dog stops would-be thieves before they get in and protects your property rain or shine – even during power outages.
Set inside your own perimeter fence, our 10-foot-high electrified fence delivers a 7,000-volt shock every 1.3 seconds and simultaneously activates ultra-bright lights and a loud alarm. The warning signs posted every 30 feet are enough to discourage most would-be intruders.
For additional layers of perimeter protection, AMAROK’s FORTIFEYE integrates additional LED lights, strategically placed surveillance cameras and 24/7 video monitoring with the Electric Guard Dog fence and alarm. Camera footage is automatically recorded and can be viewed live via our mobile app or remotely by a professional monitoring service.
Cover remote areas or those where you store equipment by adding sentinels. Available as stand-alone units or built into the Electric Guard Dog fence, sentinels sound sirens, flood the area with additional LED lights and flash a red and blue light bar if the fence is contacted.
Protect equipment and tools stored in buildings with building intrusion detection. AMAROK offers motion, glass break and door alarms, access control with entry and exit logging, surveillance cameras and 24-hour monitoring.