My department is located in Rockland County, NY and 100% volunteer. We respond to approx
550 calls a year and are currently running
65% false alarms. I came up with an idea which was presented to our fire commissioners
to have an on-call person who would be responsible for responding to these automatic alarms. whereas a general callout would be made for any other type of alarm.
We have a large commercial district consisting of a regional mall, and numerous
strip malls as well as residential occupancies.
I'm looking to see if there are any other departments who have had the same type of problems with automatic alarms and how they
are dealing with the problem as far as response.
The town has already instituted an alarm law
where the business' get fined after the third
alarm but this has not really made and impact on the continued false alarms.
Any input would be appreciated
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Thread: Automatic alarm response
06-22-2000, 12:23 AM #1Fred ParentFirehouse.com Guest
Automatic alarm response
06-22-2000, 01:32 PM #2bob1350Firehouse.com Guest
Our dept is a combination one. We too are plagued with countless false alarms for any number of reasons. I know fire prevention is looking into charging fees or fines, but nothing yet. My two big concerns are the complacency you get, because one day, its going to bite you in the rear when it's the "big one"- this is because of my second concern: Volunteers will not come to automatic alarms when they know a building has a history of false ones. If a building has a few false alarms during a short period of time, the shift commander, will usually reduce the assignment. I think your idea is great. Or make these folks institute a fire watch until they get their problems fixed!
06-28-2000, 04:42 AM #3Brian DunlapFirehouse.com Guest
Have to disagree here....We never know when that automatic alarm call will turn out to be something...although 99 % of the time it is Bull S***. Call out the Station in my opinion better safe then sorry-- I know it gets to be a hassle at 3 in the morning to respond to the same business or apartment complex for the same bad detector head or bogus bell but there have been a few instances where my company was caught with "The Bunkers down around our ankles" So to speak...Received automatic alarm call in a Dr. Office---2am---First member enroute to the station has to drive right past this location thought he still had sleep in his eyes but infact it was the heavy smoke comming from this structure !! Turned out to be an Arson Job--Yes we run about 45-50% False Alarms also but treat each one like it is the real thing---Just the other week we received an autmatic alarm call to a priviate residence on a saturday afternoon at 5pm---resident is on vacation--Upon arrival an odor of smoke was detected from the dwelling---Found to be a malfunctioning A/C Unit I believe but who knows what could have happened---Wen in doubt call everybody out---if you don't need 'em send 'em home
07-06-2000, 07:05 PM #4Chief TaylorFirehouse.com Guest
Really, the fines have sure been working for our community, maybe you need to increase the fines and get some additional dollars for your gency and just see it as a god send.
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