[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Committee of the Township of Winslow 3-23-77 as Ord. No. 0-11-77 as Ch. 23 of the 1970 Code of the Township of Winslow. Amended 11-17-82 by Ord. No. 0-14-82; 4-26-89 by Ord. No. 0-22-89; amended in its entirety 12-17-96 by Ord. No. 0-15-96. Further amendments noted where applicable.]
The purpose of this chapter is to provide standards and regulations for various types of intrusion, burglar, fire and other emergency alarm devices, whether by direct line, radio, telephone or other means, actuating and/or alerting police headquarters of the Township of Winslow and/or at the Camden County Communications Center in Lindenwold, New Jersey, and requiring a response thereto by the Police Department, the Fire Department, Ambulance or other municipal agencies.
The provisions of the chapter shall apply to any person who operates, maintains or owns any location requiring a response to any type of alarm signal or telephone call resulting from an alarm signal. The terms of this chapter shall in no way prohibit alarm companies from providing service by private source to other offices within or without the Township of Winslow. Any person having a premises protected by an alarm device shall be responsible for the registration thereof in accordance with the provisions herein provided.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- ALARM CONSOLE
- The console or control panel of devices giving a visual or audio response, or both, and located within the confines of the police headquarters of the Township of Winslow and for the Camden County Communications Center and/or any other official location recognized by all parties herein.
- ALARM DEVICE
- Any type of alarm system actuating equipment in a private or commercial alarm console or Police Department telephone system or causing the Police Department to be called by telephone providing warning of intrusions, fire, smoke, flood or other peril.
- ALARM DIALER/ACTUATOR
- That type of automatic telephone dialing device or actuator using the telephone system to transmit an alarm directly or indirectly to the Police Department or causing a commercial or public agency dispatcher to notify the police department of a local alarm signal.
- ALARM INSTALLATION
- Any alarm device or combination of devices installed for one (1) or more buildings at a location other than the alarm console or private/public alarm receiving agency.
- ALARMS (HARD WIRE)
- An alarm system that is wired directly to the alarm console which will be maintained at the Camden County Communications Center, and/or the Winslow Township Police Department or another location officially recognized by all parties indicated herein.
- ALARM SYSTEM
- The activity of maintaining, servicing, repairing, altering, replacing, moving or installing, or causing to be maintained, serviced, repaired, altered, replaced, moved or installed, in or on any building, place or premises, any device designed or used for the detection of unauthorized entry or for alerting others of the commission of an unlawful act, or both, and the detection of fire or smoke or any hazards affecting the safety of citizens and/or their property.
- FALSE ALARM
- Any alarm actuated by inadvertence, negligence or an unintentional act of someone other than an intruder and includes as well alarms caused by the malfunctioning of the alarm device or other relevant equipment, but shall not include alarms created by a malfunction of a public agency console.
- LOCAL ALARM
- Any alarm or device which, when actuated, produces a signal not connected to any alarm console, such as a burglar alarm, actuating bell or siren devices which are located on the protected premises only.
- Any person owning an alarm device or a local alarm within the scope of this chapter.
- Includes any natural person, partnership, corporation, association or any other legal entity.
[Amended 3-22-11 by Ord. No. 0-2011-009]
Any person, firm or corporation that owns or operates an alarm device or a local alarm shall make application for the installation, operation and continuance thereof in writing to the Township Clerk on the form provided by the Township Clerk's office, which application shall contain at least the location of the device, the name of the installer of the device, the type of device, provisions relating to false alarms and testing procedures, a list of persons to be contacted in the event of an alarm and other information as may be required by the Township Clerk.
Local alarms shall be registered.
For alarm devices, the registrant shall be responsible for whatever charges are required by any alarm company making such installation and, in addition thereto, such charges which are herein provided by the Township of Winslow for receiving notifications to police and any response as may be determined necessary as well as false alarm charges and any other fees herein provided.
Any applicant who shall register an alarm device or local alarm shall be deemed to have released the Township of Winslow and any of its employees from any liability or damages arising from or on account of the use and maintenance of the alarm console and related activities, and said applicant or alarm service company shall indemnify and hold the Township of Winslow harmless from and on account of any and all damages arising therefrom.
Owners of alarm dialer/actuator devices shall be governed by the false alarm procedures and assessments set forth in this chapter.
No person shall use or cause or permit to be used any telephone device, telephone attachment, electronic device or commercial dispatch that automatically selects a telephone trunk line of the Police Department of the Township of Winslow and then produces any message to report any robbery, burglary or other emergency or relay by human agency a like message without first having obtained a written permit from the Township Clerk; and no person shall install, maintain, use or permit to be used any robbery, burglary or fire emergency alarm system which automatically or semi-automatically terminates in any private establishment or telephone answering service and which is relayed by the recipient of the alarm by a telephone call to the Police Department without having first obtained a written permit from the Township Clerk.
Dial/actuator alarms shall only be coded to dial a special separate number, which number can be obtained from the Chief of Police or agent, and no dial/actuator alarm shall be coded to dial the number of the general police switchboard of the Township of Winslow.
The message must conform to an approved format on application.
The total length of any alarm message should not exceed fifteen (15) seconds.
A message is to be received by police headquarters twice, but no more than three (3) times.
In the event that any person has a dial alarm device in existence at the time of the passage of this chapter, he shall have thirty (30) days in which to apply and pay the annual fee. Any person not so complying shall be liable to a penalty payable to the Township of Winslow, as provided by Section 74-14 herein.
Any person having a dial/actuator alarm device which dials or actuates a call to the general police number, upon discovery thereof, shall receive notice in writing from the Chief of Police requiring the owner to comply with the terms of this chapter; and if the owner fails to do so within ten (10) days of the receipt of said notice, he shall then be liable to pay the Township of Winslow a penalty as provided for in Section 74-14 herein.
All components of such equipment must be maintained by the owner in good repair; and when evidence exists that there has been failure to comply with the operational requirements of this chapter, the Chief of Police or his agent, with the approval of the Director of Public Safety, shall demand that such device be disconnected until such time as compliance with current requirements is reestablished.
Any permittee utilizing any alarm system shall provide for repair services or a repairman to be on call at all times, and such service shall be provided within eight (8) hours of notification of the permittee by the Police Department of any malfunction of any equipment.
The Chief of Police shall have the right to refuse service on any and all habitual false alarm offenders and to disconnect any malfunctioning equipment from the alarm console until such time as the malfunction has been corrected, as well as refusing response to such habitual false alarm offenders.
Penalty assessments for false alarms.
In the case of a false alarm, any person having knowledge thereof shall immediately notify the Police Department in a manner to be prescribed by rules and regulations in accordance with Section 74-8 of this chapter. In addition, in the case of false alarms, the Chief of Police shall cause an investigation to be made and shall keep a record of said alarms on file and shall provide the Township Clerk with a copy of each such investigation. The permittee will be absolved of the following prescribed penalties if the Police Department is notified forthwith of the false alarm. However, should the false alarms become unreasonably repetitious and it be shown that the permittee did not exercise due care in the maintenance and/or operation of the equipment, said absolution will be abrogated. For such false alarms, the Township of Winslow prescribes the following penalty assessments:
For the first and second false alarms in any ninety-day period, a warning shall be issued.
For the third false alarm in the same ninety-day period, a fine of ten dollars ($10.) shall be paid to the Township of Winslow.
For the fourth or any subsequent false alarm, a fine of twenty-five dollars ($25.) shall be paid to the Township of Winslow.
Where the investigation of the Police Department discloses continued abuse of the privilege of connection to the alarm console or telephone system and a disregard of the permittee for taking remedial steps to avoid false alarms, the Chief of Police shall have the right to require disconnection from or disregard of the telephone system or alarm console for a limited or permanent time, provided that no such permit shall be revoked or suspended without giving the permittee an opportunity to show cause before the Director of Public Safety as to why any such action should not be taken.
Any unauthorized equipment may be disconnected by the Chief of Police or his designated representative with the consent of the Director of Public Safety for noncompliance with this chapter, and any person installing or maintaining unauthorized equipment shall be prosecuted for violation of this chapter. Each and every day said equipment is in operation shall be considered a separate violation. Any permittee shall, by acceptance of the permit, be deemed as having consented to the inspection of the premises on which said alarm devices are installed at reasonable hours by the Chief of Police or his designated representative.
All audible alarms shall be equipped with a time relay or battery to limit the sounding of an alarm to ten (10) minutes or less.
through (4) (Reserved)
[Amended 3-25-03 by Ord. No. 0-13-03; repealed 3-23-04 by Ord. No. 0-6-04]
False alarms charges: ten dollars ($10.) for the third false alarm as defined herein and twenty-five dollars ($25.) for each false alarm thereafter.
Subscriber's failure or refusal to provide a response to a police summons to deactivate an alarm: first offense, twenty-five dollars ($25.); second or subsequent offense, disconnection. In the event of a local alarm disconnection, it must be provided by the subscriber upon proper notice by the Police Department, or said subscriber will be subject to a penalty as provided in Section 74-14 herein.
Failure to pay any of the charges and fees provided for herein will subject the subscriber to disconnection.
The township shall not be responsible for any related fees charged the applicant for installation, maintenance or signal transmission.
The Chief of Police may, from time to time, promulgate written rules and regulations, subject to the approval of the Director of Public Safety, in order to provide for record keeping and efficient operation and management of said system.
Application forms and tie-in instructions shall be in a form prescribed by the township and shall be available in the office of the Township Clerk.
Terms and conditions. Upon application, permits shall be granted subject to the following terms and conditions:
The applicant shall furnish, when required, complete information and specifications relating to the system to be provided. The information shall include specific data relating to the service of false alarms and testing procedures, if desired.
No person other than the applicant and his designated agents and employees shall exercise the privilege.
The applicant shall maintain his equipment in good condition and repair and maintain an adequate work force and equipment to repair, maintain and service such system.
No permit shall be transferred or assigned in any manner.
An excessive number of false alarms will be penalized/assessed as provided herein and will subject the subscriber to disconnection.
No subscriber will fail or refuse to respond to a police summons reference deactivating an alarm, whether or not the same is legitimately or falsely activated and regardless of the type of alarm.
The Police Chief shall cause an investigation to be made and submit the results of same to the Township Clerk, who may issue the permit if the Chief of Police finds that the system in the Police Department will not jam the switchboard, constitute a nuisance or otherwise interfere with or hinder the proper operation of the police work of the township.
There shall be no permit renewal under this chapter. However, notwithstanding the foregoing, each applicant shall be required to provide the Office of the Township Clerk with any change of information in writing within ten (10) days or shall be subject to suspension and revocation of the permit pursuant to Section 74-11.
[Amended 3-22-11 by Ord. No. 0-2011-009]
Any permit issued under the provisions of this chapter may be suspended or revoked by the Police Chief as provided herein.
Any permit issued under the provisions of this chapter may be suspended or revoked by the Police Chief when it shall appear that:
The permittee, his agents or employees willfully failed or did not comply with a request by a member of the Police Department to proceed immediately to the location of the permittee's alarm and render necessary services.
The permittee, his agents or employees knowingly installed or maintained a faulty alarm device. An inordinate number of false alarms shall be prima facie evidence that such alarm device is knowingly a faulty device.
The permittee has breached the terms and conditions of the permit or has failed to comply with departmental rules or the other provisions of this Code, or the privileges so granted has been abused to the detriment of the public.
Any person aggrieved by the action of the Police Chief or Township Clerk in denying a permit or in the suspension or revocation of any permit provided for by this chapter may appeal to the Mayor and Township Committee of the Township of Winslow by serving written notice and reasons of such appeal upon the Township Clerk.
Notwithstanding the payment of any fee as herein required and/or the receiving or issuance of any permit as herein required, the Police Department of the Township of Winslow and the Township of Winslow shall be under no obligation whatsoever concerning the adequacy, the operation or maintenance of the device or devices so installed, and the Township of Winslow and its authorized agents hereby assume no liability whatsoever for any failure of any such equipment, failure to respond to any such alarms or for any act of omission or co-omission as a result of any such alarm, device or system.
The applicant or permittee, upon the acceptance of such permit, hereby agrees to hold and save harmless the Township of Winslow, its agents or employees from any liability whatsoever in connection with any such alarm system or the operation of the same.
Except as otherwise provided, any person, firm or corporation found guilty in the Municipal Court of the Township of Winslow of a violation of the terms of this chapter shall be subject to a fine of not more than one thousand dollars ($1,000.) or imprisonment for a period not exceeding ninety (90) days, or both.