Tool theft spike!

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The vast majority of builders have been hit by tool theft in the UK



Tool theft is plaguing the construction industry with more than half of builders in the UK having had their tools stolen, according to new research by the Federation of Master Builders (FMB).

The key results from the FMB’s research into tool theft are as follows:

More than half (51%) of UK builders have had tools stolen;

Of those builders that have been victim to van tool theft:

46% had their side panel or door broken/pierced and prised open;

23% had their windows smashed and doors opened from dashboard;

22% had their locks picked.

The most common preventative measures builders take in order to limit tool theft include:

Bringing their tools inside at night (19%);

Installing extra locks in the van (19%);

Parking against a wall (18%);

Marking tools with an address, phone number or painting them a special colour (9%);

Parking in an area not visible from the road (9%);

Installing safes in their vans (7%);

Installing CCTV and advertise its use (7%);

Installing extra alarm systems in the van (7%);

Registering serial numbers of tools on an online database (7%).



Research by the Federation of Master Builders reveals an industry plagued by theft causing cost rises and project delays.

Victim Andrew Radford of Radford Construction had thousands of pounds worth of tools, PPE and a wallet stolen when a company van was broken into.

He said: “Losing the tools was a huge blow because it delayed work on site while we replaced them.

“We also had to spend a lot of time contacting our insurance company, the police and cancelling the cards.

“Also, because our builders’ merchants details were in the van, we had to set up passwords to make sure it was only company colleagues who could obtain goods on our account.”

Brian Berry, Chief Executive of the FMB said the crime wave was “wreaking havoc across the construction industry.”

He said: “Tools are being stolen from vans and direct from construction sites, with some builders even being assaulted by would-be thieves.

“Not only is there a high cost in terms of both time and money spent replacing these expensive tools, and to fix the damage caused, but without the right tools, firms are simply unable to work.

“This is leading construction firms vulnerable at a time when other factors, such as skills shortages and material price rises, are already causing the sector a headache.”

Police forces are vowing to take the problem seriously.

Sally Picker, Crime Reduction Tactical Advisor, Lincolnshire Police Service, said: “We recognise builders’ frustrations at this type of crime and its seriousness.

“We will continue to work hard to ensure that as many cases as possible are brought before the courts.

“A strong message needs to be sent to the thieves that commit these crimes so that they are left in no doubt that if they choose to commit these crimes, charges will be sought to match the emotional and financial impact that tool theft has on their victims.”


Bison Industrial would like to offer you a solution for this problem with our new range of selected tool safety products. We know how important it is for you to keep your tools safe and we know that you earn money and feed your family with your tools and skills. We would like to introduce you to a range of products manufactured by Armorgard - designed to resist the toughest of thugs trying to take what its not theirs. Keep your tools safe with the OXBOX3 site box which includes the following features:

  • Keyed alike 5-lever deadlocks both sides with heavy duty Chubb-style keys, welded security id numbers
  • Strong gas struts fitted as standard - conform to industry standards (except OX05)
  • Suitable for sites and vans
  • Steel plate construction with durable powder coated finish
  • Fork lift pockets with fixing slots for easily adding castors (except OX05, OX1, OX2 and OX6)
  • Optional facility to add castors using the pre-drilled holes (except OX05, OX1, OX2 and OX6


Click Here to learn more!