Measures to Reduce Metal Theft

Scrap copper metal.

Scrap copper metal.

One of the major issues that we confront in claims is the issue of metal theft.

The cost of the claim is not in replacing the metal itself, it is often the damage caused by the thieves in their attempt at removing copper wire, copper pipes, brass fittings and the like. We have had many claims here at LMI that have been well over $500,000.
While thieves often target empty premises, they also are stealing copper from railway lines and operating factories and where they are dealing with electrical cabling they are putting their lives at risk.

For all these reasons, I would like to see that the purchase price of scrap metal be mandated to a point where it is simply not profitable for thieves to take the risk.

The green movement may argue that this is not environmentally friendly, however I would suggest that the cost of replacing just gyprock sheeting which is one of the most greenhouse gas generating products, far out weighs the benefits from recycling.

On the other side of the coin, I would like to see mandatory sentencing for thieves whose actions cause significant financial loss.

Having said all this, I am sure that responsible business owners, householders etc will continue to recycle, regardless of the scrap value paid to them.

Meanwhile, we at LMI have been working with insurers to redraft endorsements and wordings so that building components are not caught by Sub-Limits for theft or any attempt thereat which were initially designed for contents items rather than building components.

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