Borough of Berlin, NJ
Camden County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Mayor and Borough Council of the Borough of Berlin 4-25-2001 by Ord. No. 2001:3; amended in its entirety 3-2-2006 by Ord. No. 2006-2. Subsequent amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Fire prevention — See Ch. 162.
The provisions of this chapter shall apply to any person who maintains or owns any burglar or fire device and/or burglar or fire alarm system designed to produce a visual or audible signal of an emergency or otherwise designed to summon the Borough Police Department or Fire Department to any type of burglar or fire alarm signal.
A. 
The burglar or fire alarm business or owner of any audible alarm system shall be responsible for deactivating any alarm within 60 minutes after notification or after reasonable efforts have been made to notify the owner or burglar or fire alarm business that such alarm is sounding.
B. 
In the event that a burglar or fire alarm system emitting an audible, visual or other similar response shall fail to be deactivated within the time limitation specified in Subsection A above, the Police Chief or his designee, Fire Chief or Fire Official shall have the right to take such action as may be necessary in order to disconnect any such alarm.
C. 
The obligation for the maintenance, repair, upkeep and continuing operation of burglar or fire alarm systems shall be the sole responsibility of the person(s) having had the system(s) installed. All components of burglar or fire alarm equipment must be maintained in good repair by the registrant and, when evidence exists that there has been failure to comply with the operational requirements of this chapter, the Police Chief or his designee, Fire Chief or Fire Official is then authorized to demand that such device be disconnected until such time as compliance with current requirement is reestablished.
D. 
A burglar or fire alarm business, upon written request by the Police Chief or his designee, Fire Chief or Fire Official shall provide a service history of a particular alarm system within five business days after receiving the request.
E. 
Any person testing a burglar or fire alarm covered under the terms of this chapter shall notify the Police Department or Fire Department, as appropriate, immediately prior to and after the testing is completed. Failure to do so shall subject such person to the fees provided for false alarms.
F. 
The sensory mechanism of burglar and fire alarm devices shall be adjusted so as to suppress false indications and not to be actuated by impulses due to pressure changes in water pipes, short flash of light, wind, noises, rattling or vibration at doors or windows or other forces unrelated to general burglar or fire alarms.
G. 
In addition to any other information that may be required to be supplied by the provisions of this chapter, the Police Chief or his designee, Fire Chief or Fire Official may require the alarm business to furnish him with certain statistical data which may be reasonably available relative to specified periods of operation after the effective date of this chapter.
A. 
In the case of a false burglar or fire alarm, any person having knowledge thereof shall immediately notify the Police Department or the Fire Department, as the case may be, in a manner to be prescribed by the rules and promulgated in accordance with the provisions of this chapter. In the case of false burglar or fire alarms, the Police Chief or his designee, Fire Chief or Fire Official shall cause an investigation to be made and keep a record of all such burglar and fire alarms on file. Upon the occurrence of a false alarm, the Police Chief or his designee, Fire Chief or Fire Official shall cause a notice of false alarm on a form prescribed by the Police Chief or his designee, Fire Chief or Fire Official and approved by Borough Council to be forwarded to the property owner indicating the date and time of the alarm response, comments with respect to the incident and information with respect to the number of false burglar or fire alarms during the given calendar year. The form shall be signed by the Police Chief or his designee, Fire Chief or the designated representative responding to the false burglar or fire alarm investigating the matter. Fines may be imposed for repeated false burglar or fire alarms generated at the same property in any given calendar year, based on the following schedule:
(1) 
Residential properties: For the first and second false burglar or fire alarm in any given calendar year, a warning shall be issued. For the third false alarm in any calendar year, a fine of $100 shall be imposed. For each subsequent false burglar or fire alarm in any calendar year, a fine of $200 for each occurrence shall be imposed.
(2) 
Nonresidential property: For the first and second false burglar or fire alarm in any given calendar year, a warning shall be issued. For the third false burglar or fire alarm in any calendar year, a fine of $200 shall be imposed. For each subsequent false burglar or fire alarm in any calendar year, a fine of $300 for each occurrence shall be imposed.
(3) 
If a burglar or fire alarm system for a specific property or location within a property is the subject of false burglar or fire alarm incidents reported 15 or more times during any calendar year, a summons to appear before the Municipal Court for each occurrence shall be directed to the property owner and/or the business operator and any and all fines and penalties as set forth herein may be imposed by the Court as the Court deems appropriate.
(4) 
If a fine is imposed on a property owner pursuant to this section, the Police Chief or his designee, Fire Chief or Fire Official shall cause a summons to be issued to the property owner stating the amount of fine to be paid. Such fine shall be paid to the Municipal Court Clerk.
B. 
False burglar or fire alarms created by an Act of God, as determined by the Police Chief or his designee, Fire Chief or Fire Official, shall not be included in the count of false burglar or fire alarm incidents for purposes of calculating the applicable fine hereunder. In addition, the Police Chief or his designee, Fire Chief or Fire Official shall have the authority to waive any specific fines or not include any one or more incidents in the count of false alarm incidents for purposes of calculating the applicable fines as the Police Chief or his designee, Fire Chief or Fire Official determines is in the best interest of the Borough.
C. 
In the event that the Municipal Court determines that the false alarm(s) occurred as a direct result of an interruption of electrical power, a telephone system malfunction, an alarm equipment malfunction or other causes clearly beyond the control of the owner, the Municipal Court may waive imposition of the applicable false alarm fines or administrative sanction.
Any person who violates any section of this chapter shall be subject to a fine of not more than $2,000, imprisonment for not more than 90 days and/or a period of community service not to exceed 90 days. Each day on which a violation occurs shall be considered a separate offense.
The provisions contained herein shall apply equally to those burglar or fire alarm systems that are placed in service prior to or subsequent to the effective date of this chapter.