Q:What?is considered to be a false?alarm?
A:A false alarm is the activation of an alarm system that warrants the assistance of law enforcement personnel without viable cause. Even if the activation is through mechanical or electronic failure, malfunction, improper installation or negligence of the alarm user (including his/her employees or agents), it will still be considered as a false alarm.
In addition, if the law enforcement personnel find insufficient evidence of unauthorized entry, robbery, or a fire outbreak, the incident will be considered as a false alarm call.
There are different categories of fines associated with false alarms. These may include automated, activated, cancelled after dispatch and before arrival and cancelled before dispatch. It is recommended that you check your local laws for further information on false alarms as these incidents waste valuable time and resources. (Source: Trumbull Municipal Code)
Q:If my alarm is activated falsely, but it wasn't my fault, am I still responsible?
A:This may depend on your local enforcement laws. For instance, the City of Seattle bills the alarm company in case of a false alarm. The charges are then passed on to the consumer. The consumer may decide to contest the charges. According to Palm Beach County Sheriff’s office, the permit holder is held responsible for the charges. The permit holder may contact the alarm company to contest if he/she thinks the false alarm was due to a malfunction. In any case it is important to ensure that everyone in the household clearly understands and knows how to operate the security system. False alarms should not be taken lightly as they waste valuable resources. (Source: Palm Beach County Sherriff’s Office)
Q:How many false alarms may I have before I will be charged?
A:False alarm regulations vary across states and cities. Certain states and cities do not charge for the first and/or second false alarm. However, authorities in Los Angeles start charging from the first false alarm. Similarly, Fulton County, GA, ordinance states that, for the third and each subsequent false alarm that occurs at the same premises within any calendar year, a fine shall be assessed.
Q:How do I avoid paying a fee for having the police respond to a false alarm?
A:If your state or city regulation requires you to pay a fine for the police responding to a false alarm, then unfortunately you cannot get away with not paying the fine. However, there are certain states which have regulations requiring no fine for the first false alarm. Therefore, check with your local police department for false alarm specific regulations.
Q:What do I do if I set off my security system and cause a false alarm?
A:If you accidentally trigger the home security alarm, it is recommended you immediately disable the alarm via control panel. You may be fined for a false alarm depending on where you live. In some cities, you won't be charged for the first few false alarms. It is important you understand the laws and regulations regarding false alarms in your city.
Q:What should I do in the event of a false alarm?
A:If there is a false alarm, you should immediately call up the monitoring company and inform them. Most companies have a 10-15 time-frame before they dispatch security. On the other hand, it would also be helpful to have information about false alarm regulations of your city. After a certain number of false alarms, you may have to pay a fine to authorities.
Q:Will I be charged by the Police for any false alarms?
A:This depends upon which city and state you live in. In most cities, a certain amount of fine is levied for false alarms. It is important you know about the laws governing alarm systems in your state. For example, in the state of Texas, residents will be fine $50 if they have more than 3 false alarms.
Q:Will I have false alarms?
A:With a home security system, there is always the risk of false alarms. Many cities now fine residents who cause false alarms more frequently. To avoid false alarms, it is important to have a thorough understanding of the security system you have installed and make sure all the house members are aware of system. Apart from that, if you have pets in the house, you may want to opt for a pet-friendly alarm system. Taking such steps can lower the risk of false alarms.
Q:Will my pet trigger a false alarm on my home security system?
A:If you have a pet-friendly alarm system, the risk of false alarms is reduced greatly. These security systems are designed for homes that have pets. The sensors and detectors used in a pet-friendly security system are immune to motion caused by pets in the house. For example, a pet-friendly sensor will only recognize movement caused by an object or body beyond a certain height or weight.
Q:What are the risks associated with pulling a false fire alarm?
A:Pulling a fire alarm is illegal and it is considered a felony which can lead to imprisonment. It may not look like a serious issue but a false fire alarm means that the firefighters would need to rush to the place and respond to the emergency, and during that time they would be unable to cater if a real emergency occurs. Besides, it wastes a lot of time and resources of people from the fire department.