False Alarm By-Law

Town of Needham False Alarm By-Law

3.3.3 Control and Curtailment of Signals Emitted by Alarm Systems

(a) Every alarm user shall submit to the Police Chief his name, address and telephone number, and the names and telephone numbers of at least two other persons who are authorized to respond, after notification by the Police Department, to an emergency signal transmitted by an alarm system and who can open the premises in which the alarm system is installed. The owner of said premises shall immediately notify the Needham Police Department of any changes in the list of employees or other persons authorized to respond to alarms.

(b) All alarm systems, installed after the effective date of Section 3.3, which use an audible horn or bell, shall be equipped with a device that will shut off such bell or horn within (15) minutes after activation of the alarm system. All existing alarm systems in the Town of Needham must have such a shut-off device installed within six (6) months of passage of Section 3.3.

(c) Any alarm system emitting a continuous and uninterrupted signal for more than fifteen (15) minutes between 7 P.M. and 6 A.M. which cannot be shut off or otherwise curtailed due to the absence or unavailability of the alarm user, or those persons designated by him under paragraph (a) of Sub-section 3.3.3, and which disturbs the peace, comfort or repose of the community, neighborhood or a considerable number of inhabitants of the area where the alarm system is located, shall constitute a public nuisance. Upon receiving complaints regarding such a continuous and uninterrupted signal, the Police Department shall endeavor to contact the alarm user, or members of the alarm user's family, or those persons designated by the alarm user under Sub-section 3.3.3, in an effort to abate the nuisance. The Police Chief shall cause to be recorded the names and addresses of all complaints and the time each complaint was made.

d) No alarm system which is designated to transmit emergency messages or signals to the Police Department will be tested until the Police Dispatcher has been notified.

(e) The provisions of Section 3.3 shall not apply to alarm devices on premises owned or controlled by the Town, nor to alarm devices installed in a motor vehicle or trailer.

3.3.4 Penalties

(a) The user shall be assessed a false alarm service fine for each false alarm in excess of one (1) occurring within a calendar year according to the following schedule:

1) Second false alarm twenty-five dollars ($25)

2) Third false alarm fifty dollars ($50)

3) Fourth and subsequent false alarms, one-hundred dollars ($100)

The Police Chief shall notify the alarm user by mail or by service in hand by a police officer of such violation and said user shall submit payment to the Town Treasurer for deposit to the General Fund within fifteen (15) days of the notice.

(b) The owner of a system which causes six (6) or more false alarms within a calendar year, or who fails to pay the fee after said notice, may be ordered, by the Board of Selectmen, after a public hearing, to disconnect and otherwise discontinue the use of such system.