[HISTORY: Adopted by the Borough Council of the Borough of Lansdowne 2-15-1989 by Ord. No. 1088. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Building construction — See Ch. 146.
The following definitions shall apply in the interpretation and enforcement of this chapter:
- ALARM SYSTEM
- Any assembly of equipment, mechanical, electrical or battery operated, arranged to signal the occurrence of a police, fire, hazard or medical emergency requiring urgent attention and to which police or fire units are expected to respond.
- ANSWERING SERVICE
- A service whereby trained employees, in attendance at all times, receive prerecorded voice messages from automatic dialing devices reporting an emergency at a stated location, where such employees have the duty to relay immediately by live voice any such emergency message over a trunk line to the communications center of the Police or Fire Department.
- AUDIBLE ALARM
- Any device, bell, horn or siren which is attached to the interior or exterior of a building, structure or facility and is designed to attract attention when activated by a criminal act or other emergency requiring Police or Fire Department response.
- AUTOMATIC DIALING DEVICE
- A device which is interconnected to a telephone line and is programmed to transmit a signal by a voice or coded message that indicates that an emergency condition exists and the need for an emergency response is required.
- The Borough of Lansdowne.
- CENTRAL STATION
- A protective system or group of such systems operated privately for customers by a person, firm or corporation which accepts recorded messages from automatic dialing devices at a central station having operators and guards in attendance at all times who have the duty to take appropriate action upon receipt of a signal or message, including the relaying of messages to the communications center of the Police or Fire Department.
- CHIEF OF POLICE
- The administrative head of the Lansdowne Police Department.
- An individual appointed by and accountable directly and solely to the Chief of Police.
- A police, fire, hazard or medical emergency.
- FALSE ALARM
- An alarm activated in the absence of an emergency, whether willfully or by inadvertence, negligence or unintentional act, to which the Police Department or Fire Department responds. The definition excludes alarms caused by malfunctions of the County Department of Emergency Services receiving equipment; alarms for which the user has attempted to cancel response; testing or repairing of telephone or electrical lines or equipment outside the premises; acts of God, such as earthquake, flood, windstorm, thunder or lightning; an attempted illegal entry; a crime in progress; or, in the case of emergency medical alarm, an actual medical emergency requiring police, fire and/or medical personnel. If doubt exists as to the cause of the false alarm, the Chief of Police or his designee shall make a decision regarding the circumstances of the activation.
- A. Multiple alarms received by the Police Department or Fire Department before the system can be deactivated or repaired within a reasonable period of time shall be considered a single alarm.
- B. The definition of a false alarm also includes the intentional activation of a holdup alarm for other than a holdup in progress, the intentional activation of a burglary alarm for other than a burglary, the intentional activation of a medical alarm for other than a medical emergency or the intentional activation of a fire alarm for other than a fire or hazard.
- FIRE DEPARTMENT
- The Lansdowne Fire Company.
- FIRE EMERGENCY
- A fire.
- HAZARD EMERGENCY
- An explosion, leak of toxic gas, liquid or solid, or a potential explosion or leak.
- A central station protective system or an answering service as herein described.
- To use a telephone line and equipment for transmitting a message, either directly or indirectly, by an automatic dialing device.
- MEDICAL EMERGENCY
- An emergency involving the health of a person.
- POLICE AND FIRE COMMUNICATIONS CENTER
- The police and fire communications rooms and other rooms which house communications equipment and the police radio dispatcher.
- POLICE DEPARTMENT
- The Lansdowne Police Department.
- POLICE EMERGENCY
- An incident requiring prompt response by the Police Department.
- TRUNK LINE
- A telephone line leading into the communications centers of the Police or Fire Departments that is for the purpose of handling calls on a person-to-person basis and which is identified by a specific listing among the white pages in the telephone directory issued by the telephone company.
On or after the effective date of this chapter, owners or users of audible alarms must equip such audible alarms with a timing mechanism that will disengage the audible alarm after a maximum of 15 minutes. Audible alarms without such a timing mechanism shall be unlawful in the Borough of Lansdowne and must be disconnected by the owner or user within 60 days from the effective date of this chapter.
On and after the effective date of this chapter, all automatic dialing devices that transmit recorded messages directly to the Police Department or Fire Department shall be keyed to the County Department of Emergency Services Radio Room (telephone lines separate and distinct from the trunk lines for the communications center).
All owners, occupiers and tenants of real property in the Borough of Lansdowne on or in which an alarm system exists or is hereafter installed shall register such system with the Chief of Police of the Borough of Lansdowne and supply to him the following information in writing:
The address of the property.
The name, address and telephone number of the owner of the property.
The names and telephone numbers of all occupants and tenants of the property.
The name, address and telephone number of any person, firm or corporation, if any, other than the owners, occupiers or tenants who is responsible for maintenance and repair of the alarm system.
The name, address and telephone number of any other person or firm who is authorized to respond to an emergency and gain access to the property where the alarm system is installed.
A description of the alarm system.
How the alarm system will be received by the communications center (tapes, central station, etc.).
Any additional information as may be determined by the Chief to be necessary for the safety of property or persons responding to alarms and helping to prevent false alarms.
Consent to the entry upon the real property in or on which the alarm system is installed and to the inspection of the alarm system.
A battery-powered (nine-volt, 11.2-volt or similar voltage) audible alarm system or an electrically energized audible alarm system whose sole purpose is to notify the occupants of that location of an emergency situation shall be exempt from the registration requirements of this chapter if all of the following conditions exist:
The alarm is not connected to any mechanical or electrical device that automatically notifies a person or agency outside that location that the alarm system is activated.
The audible alarm does not sound outside the location (no external speakers).
The internal signal emitted by the audible alarm does not exceed 90 decibels.
The internal alarm does not cause undue annoyance or alarm to occupants of adjoining premises.
The public safety requires that the incidence of false alarms and malfunctioning automatic dialing services be kept to a minimum so as to reduce unnecessary calls to the Police and Fire Departments and to increase the effectiveness of properly functioning alarm systems. In order to enforce this and to reduce the incidence of false alarms and malfunctioning alarm systems, it is necessary that appropriate Borough officials have the right to inspect the installation and operation of any alarm system installed in the Borough. The continuance of the use of any alarm system already installed on the effective date of this chapter, as well as the registration and installation of an alarm system installed after the effective date of this chapter, shall constitute consent by the owners, occupiers and tenants of the real property to the entry upon the real property and inspection of the installation and operation of such alarm system by the Chief of Police or his designee. All such entries upon the real property where an alarm system is installed and all such inspections of the installation and operation of alarm systems shall be at reasonable times and upon reasonable notice except in emergency situations.
No person shall conduct any test or demonstration of any alarm system without first notifying the shift supervisor of the Borough police.
Any police officer or fireman responding to an alarm determined to be false shall promptly report the incident to the Chief of Police in writing, and the Chief shall within 10 days after receipt of such report notify in writing by United States mail the owner, occupier and tenants of the real property as disclosed in the registration of the alarm system.
For the purpose of defraying the costs of the Police and Fire Departments for responding to false alarms, the owners, occupiers and tenants of the real property in or on which the alarm system exists, the users of any alarm system, the persons using the services of an intermediary and users of any kind of direct or indirect connection with the police or fire communication center, except persons using the two-way live voice communication by telephone, shall be charged and pay to the Borough for all false alarms originating on the real property in accordance with the following schedule:
Such charges shall be paid to the Borough of Lansdowne within 10 days of receipt of notice thereof. Charges provided for false alarms that are relayed or transmitted by an intermediary shall be the responsibility of the owner or user of the alarm system.
[Amended 6-16-1999 by Ord. No. 1155]
Violation of any provision of this chapter, including but not limited to failure to pay the charges herein imposed for false alarms, shall constitute a summary offense punishable by a fine not to exceed $1,000, plus costs of prosecution. Such fine and costs shall be collected before the Magisterial District Judge as like fines and penalties are now by law collectible. Each twenty-four-hour period in which failure to comply continues shall constitute a separate offense.