New county police procedures in false alarms effective Feb. 1
King County Police have outlined the new procedures they will be following in cases of false alarm:
1. False Alarm Door Hanger: King County patrol officers will leave a "door hanger" with pre-printed instructions at the scene of any false alarm.
The "door hanger" will direct the home or business owner to contact his/her alarm company for assistance in correcting the equipment problem or procedural error which caused the alarm.
2. No-Response Status: A No-Response Status will be declared when six false alarms have been accumulated at a single location during a calendar year.
The home/business owner and the alarm monitoring stations will be advised that until the police department has received proof that the alarm system has been professionally repaired and/or that all employees/family members have been trained in the proper operation of the alarm system, King County Police officers will not respond to automatic (i.e., non-manually-activated) burglar alarms at the site. (The police will continue to respond to robbery and "panic" alarms, however.)
3. Alarm Verification: The King County Police Communications Center will honor requests to cancel police response to alarms when the reporting alarm monitoring service has been able to verify that no crime or other emergency is occurring at the alarm location.
Canceled police responses will not be counted against a home or business owner's alarm history if the response cancellation request is received before the officers arrive at the location.
4. Fine Structure: The false alarm fine structures of the King County False Alarm Ordinance and various contract city false alarm ordinances will remain as they are now until new ordinances are adopted.
The King County False Alarm Reduction Task Force has established a partnership between law enforcement and the alarm companies in King County.
Police said the aim of these new procedures is to have the home/business owner, the police and the alarm industry work together to prevent the incidence of false alarms, with its demands on police resources.
"The King County Police Department continues to believe in the crime prevention and crime-reporting value of alarm systems," police said.
"Improving the reliability and proper usage of alarm systems will enhance this value, while preventing the incidence of false alarms and inefficient expenditure of police resources."
Any questions on the new procedures should be addressed to Capt. Dick Baranzini, King County Police Southwest Precinct, 296-3333 or (fax) 296-0916.