Keeping copper in camp

Prevent Copper Theft

Copper theft continues to be a major crime throughout the country. Camps can be particularly vulnerable because of their remote locations and seasonal activities. Markel clients have incurred damages in excess of $9,000 and spent days rebuilding plumbing infrastructures. Various law enforcement agencies throughout the country are working with recycling facilities to reduce this crime. They offer camps a variety of strategies to help deter this type of crime.

Here are some tips for reducing copper theft at your camp:

  • Paint exposed copper pipes to conceal the true nature and color of the material.
  • Label sections of the pipe with your camp name, address, and phone number using a permanent marker or engraver.
  • Install video surveillance cameras.
  • Post signage alerting trespassers that the camp is under surveillance by local law enforcement and/or video surveillance.
  • Install motion sensitive lighting and alarms to suggest that the camp is under surveillance.
  • Inform local scrap metal recyclers of your proactive plans to combat copper theft.
  • Contact local law enforcement for additional ideas and strategies that might be in practice in your area.

Various technologies exist to help combat copper theft. Examples include microdot or DataDot technology. These technologies are relatively inexpensive and they help recyclers track ownership of property. More information about these alternatives can be found at

Prevent Copper Theft
The information provided in this article is intended for general informational purposes only and should not be considered as all encompassing, or suitable for all situations, conditions, and environments. Please contact us at or your attorney if you have any questions. The article may not be linked to, copied, reproduced, republished, posted, or distributed in any way by non-policyholders of Markel®, without permission.