We got to chat to Roger Bisby on his SkillBuilder channel recently about tool crime, what we can all do to help protect ourselves, how we can keep pushing the issue of tool theft forward and how we can engage with the different agencies involved in tackling the problem. Have a watch and let us know what you think in the comments!
Don’t get complacent!
There are lots of things you can do to protect your van and your tools:-
- Mark your tools, whether it’s buying a DNA marking kit, scratching your name or postcode into the body of the tools, anything that means they can be identified if stolen.
- Register your tools on a Secured By Design database – https://www.immobilise.com is totally free to use and you can report tools as lost or stolen on there too! Being SBD means the police have full access to the database.
- Tool insurance – if you have got it, make sure you check the policy details, many won’t cover tools left in the van overnight and will be very specific in what they don’t cover, new for old, evidence of forcible entry.
- Invest in a secondary alarm that IS NOT linked to your van’s central locking.
- Consider using a secure internal storage box, there is a list of police approved products here – https://www.securedbydesign.com/member-companies/accredited-product-search
- Consider where you park your vehicle, not just overnight but during the day too. Many of these crimes happen outside Builders Merchants – when you’ve nipped into the sandwich shop, or even the supermarket. Always make sure your van is locked whenever you leave it. Don’t ever think because you’ll only be a minute that you aren’t at risk.
- If you can, park your van so that access to the barn or sliding doors is difficult, making it less attractive to thieves.
- Consider hiding Air tags or similar in vans/tools where you can – the tracking range is unlimited in comparison to the bluetooth chips in some tools.
Sadly, the list above isn’t exhaustive, but many of the tips on there are simple and cheap to employ.
We will keep pushing this, but we need your help too. Stay vigilant, make sure you do as much as you can to protect your livelihood.
Apply pressure to your local MP’s, Police and Crime Commissioners, van manufacturers, tool manufacturers. We need to raise the profile of tool theft. It really isn’t the same on any level as having your car broken into.
Report any crime that affects your van and the tools inside. Push for the police to come and investigate the scene. Make sure you do what you can to ensure the tool theft data is there to be taken heed of. If the figures are more accurately presented it becomes more difficult to dismiss it as a petty crime.
If you do fall victim to tool theft, share your stories with us, with directly on the Group, or email us at [email protected] – we want to hear your experiences, from finding you’ve been targeted, to how the police responded to it.