Every year in the United States, the Police Department responds to an alarm-generated burglary alarm every 3.5 seconds.
On average, 95% of those alarms are False Alarms.
False alarms aren’t just a nuisance. They cost the Police Department thousands of dollars in wasted time and resources. More importantly, they also cost the public by causing Police Officers who should be responding to actual emergencies to be bogged down responding to False Alarms. The problem has gotten so bad that in many places in the United States, the Police Department is starting to fine people for repeated false alarms.
We here at Knight Security are committed to trying to reduce the number of false alarm dispatches we make while at the same time maintaining our high level of protection and service we already offer. In this effort, we have been undertaking numerous lines of investigation, compiling data, working with False Alarm Reduction groups, and studying the latest statistics and suggestions being made by both Alarm Companies and National and Local Police Departments.
The number one leading cause of False Alarm calls in the United states is Customer Error. Accidentally setting off your alarm when you come home from work. Forgetting to turn off a fan which then blows around some paper, which then sets off a motion alarm. Taking too long to leave your house after you have set the alarm and causing it to go off as you close the door. Not knowing how to properly cancel an alarm once you have set it off. There’s a lot you can do to mishandle your alarm system and cause a False Alarm Dispatch. Luckily, there’s only a few things you should know to help prevent them!
Below are four simple steps that everyone who owns a monitored burglary alarm should follow.
- KNOW HOW TO USE YOUR SYSTEM. There are user manuals and training videos here on the webpage, or you can call and arrange to have a technician to come to your house and train you. Either way, make sure you-and anyone else who uses your system on a regular basis-are comfortable with arming, disarming, disarming during an alarm state, using the ‘cancel/verify’ option, and inputting their user codes.
- KNOW WHAT TO DO IN CASE OF A FALSE ALARM. What are you going to do? CALL YOUR SECURITY COMPANY IMMEDIATELY! Don’t wait to disarm the alarm. Don’t assume they are going to call you. Pick up the phone and dial them as soon as your alarm is triggered. Post your security company’s phone number by the phone. Save it as a speed-dial option on your cell. Monitors receiving your alarm have a very limited amount of time in which to make a decision regarding dispatching
- KEEP YOUR SYSTEM UPDATED AND IN GOOD REPAIR. You wouldn’t expect a malfunctioning toaster to make good toast; you can’t expect a malfunctioning security alarm system to protect you very well. Take care of little problems before they become HUGE problems. Have your security system inspected once a year by your installer to detect problems that may be developing and to change batteries in wireless devices and backups.
- MAKE SURE YOUR GUESTS KNOW HOW TO USE YOUR SYSTEM AND TO CALL IN FOR FALSE ALARMS. More often than you’d think, we get False Alarms not from the owner of the system but from their family, visiting in from out-of-town, who do not own a system of their own and have no idea how to use it.