CURWENSVILLE — To help protect public safety, Curwensville Borough Council adopted a false alarm ordinance at Monday’s meeting.

The ordinance controls the dispatch of the borough’s fire department and emergency response personnel to false or faulty fire alarms received from automated fire warning systems and establishes penalties for more than three false alarms from the same property in a calendar year.

The decree states the ordinance was created because it is council’s desire to prevent unnecessary expense of public funds associated with the response of the fire department to fraudulent fire system warnings disrupting the lives and work of volunteer firefighters, the unnecessary use and depreciation of emergency equipment and the disruption in borough streets and alleys.

It defines a false alarm as any fire alarm received from an automated warning system which is caused by a system defect; accidental, careless or misuse of a system or other undetermined causes not caused by fire. Penalties will be accessed in a one calendar year period beginning Jan. 1 and ending Dec. 31.

The owners of all premises will be permitted three false alarms in one calendar year. After three false alarms, the owner of the fire warning system will be notified by certified mail to repair its alarm system within 30 days.

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Any warning system that generates more than three false alarms in a calendar year and the owner fails to prove that the system is being repaired, will be charged $100 for the fourth false alarm up to $500 for the eighth false alarm and any subsequent ones that are not excused during the year.

Council will have the power to excuse false fire alarms received during periods of public emergencies when the alarm is caused by a condition created by the emergency.

Any business that receives a violation notice will have 10 days to pay the amount due. Any penalties that are not paid in that time will have a criminal citation issued for the offense

Fire Department Committee Chairwoman Harriet Carfley noted at a recent meeting, the ordinance was requested by Rescue Hose & Ladder Co.

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