A "false alarm" is an alarm signal that triggers an emergency response (police, fire or medical) when no emergency has actually occurred.
Why Are False Alarms A Problem?
False alarms reduce the overall effectiveness of home security systems. If alarms are seen as unreliable indicators of emergencies, they may potentially be ignored by authorities.
False alarms can exhaust the resources of emergency personnel and keep them from being able to respond to actual emergencies.
False alarms increase costs for taxpayers, as additional personnel are required to respond to elevated numbers of alarms.
False alarms can lead to a denial of service. In some areas, police, fire and emergency personnel are instructed to ignore the alarms of users whose systems have been known to set off false alarms.
False alarms can carry fines. In many cities, towns and municipalities, owners of security systems that trigger false alarms can be fined for each occurrence.
How ADT® Two-Way Voice Can Help
At Easy-Home-Security, we offer an exclusive opportunity to receive the Two-Way voice feature with your alarm system, which can significantly reduce the possibility of a false alarm being sent to the authorities.
By having the ability to communicate with you through the alarm panel, the ADT® dispatcher can verify an actual emergency, or a false alarm, prior to dispatching the first responders. This decreases the likelihood that you will be charged for false alarms from your local authorities.
What Do Alarm Permits Have To Do With False Alarms?
Some cities and localities that operate a police and/or fire department have historically struggled with the problem of false alarms from home security systems. A "false alarm" occurs when a security system sends a signal to the authorities that there is an emergency when in fact there is none. This becomes a waste of police, fire and medical resources who respond to non-emergencies, which creates additional cost and safety issues for the municipalities that are operating the emergency services.
As a response to the increased cost of operations for emergency services responding to these false alarms, many municipalities have enacted laws requiring that owners of home security systems pay for a permit to operate the alarms. In addition, many areas enforce fines for multiple false alarms to offset these additional costs for emergency services.
Is an Alarm Permit Required for my Area?
Depending on your location, you may be required to purchase an alarm permit to install your new security system. Local laws and regulations change frequently, but your local ADT® Security Specialist will be able to assist you with acquiring a permit if one is required. Contact us today to find out if an alarm permit is required, or use the form below for more general information.
Your Responsibilities as a Home Security System Owner
As a home security system owner, part of your responsibility will be in managing false alarms. This means that should your alarm system be accidentally triggered, either by forgetfully opening a door when the alarm is set, or having a small kitchen fire (if smoke detection is enabled), it is your responsibility to cancel the alarm before authorities are dispatched to your home, or you may be subject to fines.
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"While working in my garage, I heard our alarm system go off. I immediately ran to the house and saw smoke coming from the kitchen window (I had left the toaster oven on). The fire department responded right away because ADT immediately contacted them. Having an ADT security system with their monitoring service saved my home."