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Protect your Property from Metal Theft

We strongly recommend that you review the security of your property. Please consider the crime prevention advice in this section to protect your property against metal theft.

Some of the security measures below are low-cost options, while others involve using more high-tech solutions at a greater expense. Some security measures will be more appropriate than others for your property.

Low-cost options

  • Remove any easy access onto building roofs, such as water butts, waste bins and tall trees located near to the building. This makes theft more difficult. Remember to get any necessary approval from your local authority for tree cutting before work starts.
  • Store ladders in a secure place. This is really important when building works that involve scaffolding are taking place.
  • Tell your insurance company in advance of any building work that you are doing. Not disclosing this information may affect your insurance cover.
  • Where possible, keep any gates locked and restrict vehicle access to the site.
  • Make it difficult for thieves to move stolen goods by removing wheelbarrows and wheelie bins. Put these items in a secure place.
  • Maximise surveillance by cutting back tall trees and vegetation which could otherwise provide a screen for intruders to hide behind. Remember to get any necessary approval from your local authority for tree cutting before work starts.
  • Regularly check your roofs so that any theft of roofing materials is found before it rains and water enters the building, causing further damage.
  • Encourage members of your community to keep an eye on the building and to report any suspicious activity.
  • Watch out for workmen arriving unexpectedly at a building.
  • Display a warning notice that asks people to call police on 101 if they see vans or workmen around the building between 6pm and 8am, as they could be stealing the lead roof.
  • Apply anti-climb paint to drain pipes and roof guttering. This restricts access to roofing. Do not apply the paint below a height of two metres. Display warning notices which warn people that anti-climb paint is being used. Display them prominently. Anti-climb paint can be bought from any security products company.
  • Protect the lower section of lightning conductor ribbons using a metal cage or sheath securely fixed to the building fabric.
  • Consider installing security lighting, particularly at roof level where metal roof coverings are present. Check with your local authority if permission is needed to do this.
Updated: 17th December 2014 at 11:15