False alarms aren't just a nuisance — they're also costly. In some areas, the first false alarm is greeted with a warning. The second through sixth instances are each met with a fine. With the seventh false alarm, local authorities stop responding to the location for 90 days unless a panic button has been pressed, signaling that there is someone in distress.
A business can't afford to pay unnecessary fines, nor can they afford to have their alarms ignored. Learn what practices you can engage in to avoid a false alarm.
Stay on Top of Building Maintenance
Maintenance is an important part of preventing a false alarm. Take a malfunctioning rolling door, for instance. If the door is out of balance, when left in the open position, it may move and slide down into the closed position. If the door is left in the open position when the alarm is activated, the door's movement may trigger the sensor and alarm.
Don't let instances like this cost your business extra money. Have any alarm-triggering maintenance concerns addressed promptly. Unaddressed rodent infestations and unstable cubicle walls that may sway or collapse are just some of the additional issues that fit into this category.
Ensure Team Members Are Trained
Of the more common reasons for false alarms, user errors involving poor employee training are a leading cause. Just as you take steps to train employees on their specific role throughout the day, they should also be trained on opening and closing procedures. Take opening practices, for example.
When deactivating the alarm, an employee should always refrain from moving away from the keypad until they receive a confirmation that the alarm has been disengaged. Even failing to push a single button hard enough could prevent the alarm from deactivating properly.
If it is a silent alarm system, the employee could be navigating around the building not realizing the alarm has been engaged. Ensure team members understand how to operate the system correctly.
Keep Phone Lines Accessible
Some businesses will transfer their phone over to an answering service for after hour-calls. This practice in and of itself will not lead to a false alarm, but it can increase the likelihood of one occurring. For businesses that completely shut down their phone access, this means that any employees on-site after hours will be unable to call out or receive calls.
In the event the alarm is triggered, this means the employee can't contact the alarm company to notify them of the error, and it also means the alarm company can't reach anyone on-site for verification. If you have this type of system in place, ensure the on-site phone lines are not completely disabled.
Protect the Alarm System
A well-maintained alarm system is also necessary. When an alarm is not functioning properly, a malfunction can trigger the system unexpectedly. For example, with some models, a dead battery causes a power failure that signals the alarm. In other instances, a short in a wiring line caused from regular wear can also be a trigger. The average battery lasts for around three years.
If more than this amount of time has elapsed since replacing the battery, it's time to perform this step. In terms of proper function, an alarm system can last for decades, but periodic testing, software updates, and routine professional inspections are necessary to keep it working properly and avoid a false alarm.
When you partner with a professional from Security Services Northwest, Inc., not only will you have greater confidence your business is protected, but you'll also be provided with the knowledge necessary to avoid a false alarm. Ensure you're working to protect your business on all sides.