False Alarm Billing

False Alarms

False alarm means the activation of a fire alarm system or security alarm system as a result of which services, including fire and police services, are provided by or on behalf of the City of Longwood and the providers of the services do not find any evidence of fire, fire damage, smoke, criminal activity or unauthorized entry.

Fire Alarm Systems

Fire alarm system means a device or devices installed on or in real property and designed to issue a warning of a fire by activating an audible alarm signal or alerting a monitoring facility but does not include a fire alarm system that is intended to alert only the occupants of the dwelling unit in which it is installed.

Security Alarm Systems

Security alarm system means a device or devices installed on or in real property and designed to warn of criminal activity or unauthorized entry by activating an audible alarm signal or alerting a monitoring facility.

User error is the number 1 cause of false alarms: 76% of all false dispatches are caused by users.

Steps to Prevent False Alarms

  • Become familiar with how to operate the system and how to use its features
  • Please read and retain the operator’s manual for your security system
  • Make sure everyone who has a key to your home or business knows how to operate the security system
  • Rehearse alarm cancellation with everyone who might use your system. Test your system regularly
  • When leaving your premise, ensure that all doors and windows are locked
  • If you have pets, be sure they are in an area not covered by motion sensors
  • Correct all drafts that may move plants and curtains, both of which may cause an alarm
  • Insist that the keypad is easily accessible from the exit points, and the arming delay is set for a reasonable period
  • Replace the main backup battery every 3-5 years
  • Insist that the system have a simple method for testing that will not result in a false dispatch, and then perform a test monthly
  • Insist that your system can transmit a cancel signal code if immediately after an alarm a correct code is keyed in
  • Insist on a service call as soon as possible after any unexplained alarm
  • Request annual maintenance checks by the alarm company after any household changes (remodeling, pets etc...) Contact the alarm company to be sure alterations do not affect the system
  • Insist that the installing company adequately train you on how to use your system and be sure you understand how to operate it before the technician leaves
  • Refer to your owner's manual or contact your alarm company if you have more questions
  • Ensure that all key holders are trained in the proper use of the system
  • Instruct domestic or repair persons on how to fully operate your system
  • Never provide a key to someone who is not familiar with the system
  • It is important to ensure that your security system is communicating properly at all times, especially if your system does not have radio or cellular backup.
  • Regular testing of your security system will help insure its proper operation at the time of an emergency, and help prevent false alarms
  • We recommend that customers test their system at least monthly or when there are changes to your telephone service (DSL, call waiting and call notes, new jacks, etc.); when you experience telephone problems; when you suspect there may be an equipment malfunction; when you have a power failure or lightening damage