SIAC Says: Common Sense and Cooperation Reduces False Alarms
Security Industry Alarm Coalition Offers Communities Model Alarm Ordinance
Frisco, Texas (March 29, 2010) – With more than 32 million alarm systems in use throughout the United States, public safety and alarm industry leaders are designing proven programs to reduce the number of false alarms.
“Public safety officials recognize the important role alarm systems play in protecting life and property,” said Stan Martin, executive director of the Security Industry Alarm Coalition (SIAC). “Our shared goal is protecting the public.”
Working with SIAC, police organizations in thirteen states have implemented state-wide alarm management committees that bring together law enforcement and alarm industry leadership. Several states have implemented state-wide requirements that new alarm panels meet CP-01 specifications which reduce operator errors—the main cause of false alarms.
SIAC offers municipalities a Model Alarm Ordinance that requires registration of alarm systems with local police, a graduated fine structure, new equipment standards, suspension of response to chronic abusers and Enhanced Call Verification (ECV). ECV (two-call verification) requires that alarm monitoring stations attempt to confirm an alarm by calling the site and the alarm user to determine whether the signal is valid before requesting dispatch. In Seattle, Washington, a full commitment to ECV and other recommended measures resulted in a 71% reduction in emergency calls for dispatch. Olympia, Washington credited SIAC’s recommended practices with an 80% reduction in police dispatch to alarm calls.
The model ordinance also allows for cost recovery to help communities generate revenue to offset the expense of administering the ordinance and defray the cost of police response. SIAC’s experts, including former police administrators, are available free of charge to advise government agencies in the U.S. and Canada working on alarm issues.
States with alarm management committees established by state police chiefs associations include: Georgia, Florida, Minnesota, Alabama, Oklahoma, Virginia, Indiana Connecticut, North Carolina, South Carolina, Mississippi and Texas.
SIAC is comprised of four major North American security associations--Canadian Security Association (CANASA), Security Industry Association (SIA), Central Station Alarm Association (CSAA), and the Electronic Security Association (ESA) -- representing one voice for the alarm industry on alarm management issues. SIAC’s primary charter is to significantly reduce calls for service while strengthening the lines of communication with law enforcement professionals and end users. For more information, contact www.SIACinc.org.
David Margulies/Shane Sumrow (214) 368-0909