Are burglar alarms a worthwhile investment in the protection of your home and family?
Studies reveal that it is far less likely that you will become the victim of a burglary at home if you have a correctly fitted and well maintained burglar alarm. (See what burglars dislike) However, they should be regarded only as one element within a complete security package.
Alarms can be either wired or wireless and should conform to British Standard BS 4737/BS EN 50131 or 6799. Wireless alarms look nicer, are generally easier to install and can be removed more easily if you move house. They use battery-powered sensors that communicate with a control panel using radio signals. Wired systems usually need to be installed by a professional, as the wires will need to be hidden, so labour costs are higher.
Read more: http://www.which.co.uk/reviews/burglar-alarms-and-home-security/article/burglar-alarms-and-home-security/burglar-alarms – Which?
If you are thinking about the installation of an alarm system in your home it is worth taking into account that the police response to alarm activations varies according to the type of alarm installed. In recent years the percentage of false alarm calls caused by either equipment, communication or user error represented in excess of 92% of all alarm activations nationally.
In order to redress the balance in favour of genuine calls, the ACPO Unified Intruder Alarm Policy has been adopted by the police, in which two types of alarms are defined, together with the relevant police response.
- Type A – Remote Signalling Alarms, including intruder alarms terminating at approved central monitoring stations (monthly fee). They must be maintained and used in accordance with British Standard 4737/BS EN 50131, BS 7042 (high security systems) or BS 6799 Class VI (wire-free alarm).
- Type B – Audible Only and Hybrid Alarms, including bells-only and automatic dialling alarms, as well as alarms from non-compliant companies and non-compliant central stations. URNs will not be issued for these systems. To obtain police attendance, in addition to their activation Type B alarms will also require some indication that an offence is in progress, e.g. from a witness or CCTV.
The wireless alarms we install comply with Type B and can have cameras incorporated to confirm a crime is in progress.
If you are contemplating having an alarm installed and need additional advice, contact us or your local Crime Prevention Officer who will be happy to offer you further guidance. You may find that the cost of fitting an alarm system is lower than you originally anticipated.
If several houses in a street or Neighbourhood Watch are considering installing alarm systems, we will give a discount for multiple installations. What is more, it is possible that the cost of an installation could be partly offset by reduced household insurance premiums. You should be aware, however, that the insurer may stipulate that the alarm should be set at all times when the property is unoccupied, and that any claim for losses incurred as a result of a break-in while alarm was not set may be adjusted accordingly.