NBFAA Urges Dealers to Help Law Enforcement With False Alarms

SILVER SPRING, Md.—With the continuing challenge of reducing false alarms, the National Burglar and Fire Alarm Association (NBFAA) has once again declared November False Alarm Prevention Month. The association has partnered with law enforcement in the False Alarm Reduction Association (FARA) and the Law Enforcement and Security Alliance (LESA) to educate consumers on the seriousness of false alarms. Together, these groups will work with dealers to create initiatives to improve installation and service, as well as increase training opportunities before and after the system is installed.

NBFAA has initiated a multifaceted plan to educate alarm dealers about false alarm issues and foster cooperation and communication with law enforcement. Dealers will receive contact lists of law enforcement professionals on their state and regional levels so they can visit them and provide them with a list of alarm companies in their local and/or state association as a reference if and when they need help with a client. To receive a list of law enforcement contacts, call NBFAA at (301) 585-1855.

NBFAA has also instituted a Dealer Pledge program. The purpose of the program is to have dealers sign a pledge form vowing to abide by these three key steps:

1. Attempt to verify alarms before any police dispatch.

2. Install systems with SIA Control Panel False Alarm Reduction features left in the default mode.

3. Commit to not placing a system in service until each user is adequately trained.

The pledges will be shared with law enforcement officials in their area as well as among their peers. All dealers are encouraged to sign the pledge sheet on page 22 and fax it back to NBFAA at (301) 585-1866.

Communication between the electronic systems industry, law enforcement and consumers is a must. Dealer support is needed and encouraged, so get involved today! For more information on the Dealer Outreach Program, or False Alarm Prevention Month, call NBFAA.  Assessing Jurisdictions With False Alarm Issues

In order to make jurisdiction visits regarding the false alarm issue educational and beneficial, the National Burglar and Fire Alarm Association (NBFAA) has provided some helpful steps on how to approach the jurisdictions in your area:

—Visit any area that has a known false alarm problem and try to meet with the chief supervisor or other high-level personnel. If the problem has not been publicized, approach the largest municipalities to open dialogue with public safety personnel.

—Let them know you have a list of companies (describe who is on the list, such as, “all companies in your area” or “companies that are members of your association”) that you would like to leave with them for this purpose. Let them know you would welcome the opportunity to discuss electronic security alarm issues with them.

—If law enforcement personnel want to continue the conversation at that time, great! If they don’t, leave them your card and, if possible, set an appointment for your next visit.

NBFAA Offers 5 Quick Reminders

1. Ensure you are meeting with the right people in the department. Aside from police chiefs, sheriffs or other high-level personnel, ask to have the alarm coordinator, safety officer, community policing officers—whoever deals with alarms on a day-to-day basis—present at the meeting. Also, if there are FARA or LESA members in the area you are targeting, try to get them to the meeting as well.

2. Take on as much responsibility as you can manage, which will show your dedication to addressing the false alarm problem.

3. Stay involved and don’t make promises you can’t keep.

4. Use the NBFAA/FARA Model Burglar Alarm Ordinance to show commitment by both the alarm industry and law enforcement to address false alarm issues.

5. Be proactive! Don’t wait for a municipality to get really upset and recommend something drastic that probably won’t meet everyone’s needs. If you contact law enforcement officials before a problem develops and show a willingness to get involved, the industry will be better off.

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