© New Zealand Broadcasting School 2019

Hundreds of tradies line up to get tools engraved to stop theft

Ryan Anderson
Police set up to engrave tradies tools Ryan Anderson

PlaceMakers and the NZ Police teamed up to engrave drivers license numbers into tradies tools so they could better identify them if they get stolen.

Tradies said stolen tools are emptying their pockets as insurance doesn't cover them.

On Friday morning PlaceMakers played host to tool engraving as around 300 tradies lined up to protect their expensive equipment.

Ultraspec building systems foreman Willie said having to replace tools constantly is expensive.

"My insurance only covered me if [my tools] were in the van, so if it was on site it wasn't covered, so more or less you have to replace it yourself."

Police said they are cracking down on tradie tool thefts by putting as many preventative measures in place as they can.

Senior Sergeant Stephen McDaniels said engraving helps return expensive tools to their rightful owner.

"Make sure you buy your tools from reputable places rather than shady deals - if we can stop the receiving we can stop a lot of that [tool theft]"

PlaceMakers said they see workers come in every week looking to replace stolen gear.

Promotions Co-ordinater Angela Gibbs said the programme has been rolled out across the country in a bid to help prevent thefts.

"We have one-to-two builders a week have their tools taken from site... some of the tools are up to $2,000 per item."