**By Michelle Evans, Verification Center Manager**
False alarms are stressful, embarrassing and increasingly expensive. Many communities are facing proposed and actual cutbacks in their budgets and are enforcing false alarm fines. At Sonitrol Pacific, our goal is to partner with law enforcement and our customers to make the best possible use of the officers’ time, provide you with the best response time for valid burglary and emergency situations, and keep false alarms to a minimum. Presently, our valid dispatch (non-false alarm) rate is 16 times better than the industry average. Our target is to be at least 30 times better.
Minimizing false alarms will take all of us working together. At Sonitrol Pacific we are committed to the following efforts to reduce false alarms:
• A Sonitrol Pacific Customer Service Representative will visit your site and review your after-hours call lists annually at no cost to you.
• If you have a false alarm, we will send a Service Technician or a Customer Service Representative to visit you and determine the cause of the false alarm and work with you to ensure it does not happen again. There is no cost to you.
• We will provide free ongoing group or one-on-one training to you and your employees on how to properly operate your alarm system.
What you can do:
• Take advantage of free signage offered by Sonitrol Pacific to remind your employees to turn on and off the system.
• Use the designated door – and make sure everyone knows which door is designated– for entry and exit and within the allotted time.
• If you make changes in building usage, notify us so we can visit you and make the appropriate modifications to your Sonitrol alarm system.
• Update your after-hours contact list to ensure that we have accurate contact name and phone number information. Whenever you have a personnel change with anyone who may arm or disarm your system or respond to calls, please let our Data Center know immediately by email at datacenter@ sonitrolpacific.com.
• Inform your emergency contacts that Sonitrol Pacific may call and that answering calls, even at inconvenient times, is important to the protection of the building.
• Let us know in advance if you will have workers outside of your business when your security system is turned on, i.e. landscapers, window washers, etc.
• Ask about integrating access control (keyless entry) into your security system. Keycards and fobs can disarm your system upon entry so you don’t have to worry about remembering codes and pressing buttons.
Working together, we will minimize any unnecessary use of valuable police resources. Our success has been built upon the continued confidence of law enforcement agencies and the highest apprehension rate in the industry. We look forward to continuing this partnership with you. Please do not hesitate to call with any questions you may have or to set up additional training times.