So you want to know what the police response will respond to an alarm activation at your premises. OK let’s see what that involves.
First of all it should be noted that the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) amended their policy regarding police response to burglar alarms in January 2010.
When considering the response they give to alarm activations, the police classify security systems into two groups – Type A and Type B. The table below shows the main differences (including approximate costs of installation/maintenance) between the two Type Standards:
|Must conform to the relevant prEN50131/PD6662.DD243||Does have to conform to EU requirements and we would recommend you contact Affinity One Security Solutions for more details on 08000 336 999 i.e. and must conform to European Regulations.|
|Must be installed by an alarm installer approved by the National Security Inspectorate (NSI) or Security Systems and Alarm Inspection Board (SSAIB).||Affinity One Security Solutions iare an SSAIB Company and nstall most of alarms including ADT Intruder Systems.|
|The alarm must be connected to an approved Alarm Receiving Centre (ARC). On activation of the alarm the ARC will notify the police||Preferably and we would recommend you install a monitored alarm that, when activated dials an Alarm Receiving Centre. Alternatively you can have a Speech Dialer that has a list of pre-set telephone numbers. When it gets an answer it delivers a pre-recorded message. (|
|Must have at least two key-holders registered with the ARC or a central key-holding service. A failure of key-holders to attend can result in the withdrawal of police response.||No but we strongly recommend that a monitored alarm is installed as it is able to contact the Alarm Receiving Centre (ARC) who will contact the Police as you receive Level 1 responce which is the same as threat of life.You require 2 Keyholders that live in a 20 minute car distance and the keyholder is required in case the home owner is unavailable. You will not lose Police if a keyholder cannot attend.The ARC needs to be able to dial both key-holder who can respond to the activation – a neighbour or friend is ideal but please don’t use the number of the local police station!|
Police Response Guaranteed
|Yes. But police receive the information from the ARC that an activation has taken place as an immediate/urgent incident. This is a Level 1 responce and Police are despatched immediately. Police response withdrawn altogether after 2 number of false alarms.||No. But police will attend if a criminal offence is in progress. Notification can be through the 999 system.|
|OK then – lets have a look at the different costs involved in installing a “monitored” alarm in a 3 bedroomed semi or similar sized detached property|
|About £26 per month. Contracts are usually for two or possibly three years||Nil|
Unique Reference Number (URN)
|£51.18plus VAT – a one off payment to police. The URN is allocated by the police to the security company||Nil|
Type A – There are actually, two levels of police response where an alarm has been installed to Type A specifications.
The ACPO Policy document does make this clear and the first type of response is called:
“Level 1 – Immediate/Urgent – It should be noted that police response is ultimately determined by the nature of demand, priorities and resources which exist at the time a request for police response is received” (ACPO Policy Document)
When I was a police officer there was nothing I liked better than nicking burglar Bill in the act. I think it’s fair to say that the vast majority of my colleagues had the same motivation, and when the control room sent us to an alarm we would race to the scene as quickly as we could. However, the vehicle(s) that are required to respond to an alarm activation are also responding to assaults, domestics, thefts, road traffic collisions, sudden deaths, missing persons – the list goes on an and on and on.
As can be seen from the above table, a Type A alarm activation will be passed to the police via an approved Alarm Receiving Centre (ARC). When control room staff receive notification from the ARC they will, in accordance with ACPO policy, allocate units to attend the police response to an alarm activation will be Level 1. The bottom line here is that the police will class a Type A alarm activation as requiring an immediate/urgent response and my experience is that they will do everything they can to respond appropriately. However if an alarm company states that they guarantee police response they are now committing an offence under the new Consumer Protection Act 2008. It is quite a simple matter that if it is put in such a way that the customer genuinely believes that the police will come if their alarm goes off, then the offence is complete.
Generally speaking, the police target response times to immediate or urgent incidents is 10 minutes in urban areas and 20 minutes in rural areas. This may differ between police areas and you should contact your local police station to find out what their targets are for attending various types of incidents.
That was the first level of police response to a Type A alarm.
“Level 3 – Withdrawn – No Police response, key-holder response only” (ACPO Policy Document)
And what does this mean in practice?
First of all you will note that there is no Level 2. This is not a typo – the “old” level 2 is no longer relevant and has been withdrawn, but the numbering system in the ACPO policy has remained the same!
That was Type A what about Type B
Type B – Generally speaking the types of self install alarms compared on this web site will fall under this category and would not be to linked an ARC. Consequently, the police would not be informed of an alarm activation by a monitoring centre. However, all is not lost.
When notification of an activation of a Type A alarm is received at an ARC, they have to go through a procedure to ensure that it is not a false alarm before contacting the police. A