City reminds citizens about false alarms - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

City reminds citizens about false alarms

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ALBANY, GA (WALB) -

In its newsletter published Friday, the City of Albany sent a reminder that when burglar alarms go off falsely, it costs us all.

The city says that citizens will face fines if their alarm system causes too many police responses. They call it 'crying wolf.'

Here is their message:

One of the most common calls for service is the burglar alarm call. An officer spends an average of 20 minutes on each burglar alarm call; most of these are false alarms. This ongoing problem of false burglar alarms is wasteful of resources and costly to the residents and business owners.

Public Safety Units respond on an average over 10,000 false alarms yearly, 90 percent of these are false burglar alarm calls.

The large number of false alarms led to the development of Albany's alarm ordinance, which went into effect January 1, 2001. The ordinance also created a tiered fee system for excessive false alarms. The goal of the ordinance is to reduce wasted man hours spent in responding to false alarms.

The ordinance requires all alarm systems within the City of Albany, Georgia to be registered within three (3) business days of installation. The registration requirement also provides public safety emergency units with contact information in case of a suspected break-in.

Fire Alarms and medical alarms that elicit a medical or fire department are also required to be registered; Motor Vehicle and boat alarms are not required to be registered.

Residents and business owners who do not register their alarm systems within three (3) business days of installation are subject to penalty of $100.00 being charged. Excessive false alarms exceeding 5 false alarms during a calendar year are assessed a service fee.

For a registration form and a copy of the ordinance visit the City of Albany, Georgia Web Site at www.albany.ga.us, online services