False Alarms in Heights of Collingswood Irksome to Officials
Borough authorities report the fire alarm system in the building has been maliciously and falsely triggered at least four times since the beginning of the year.
Collingswood emergency services personnel have been called out to investigate four false-alarm calls at the Heights of Collingswood apartment building since Jan. 3.
All have occurred in the same wing of the first floor of the "D" Tower in the Heights of Collingswood in the same wing:
- Jan. 3 – 8:08 p.m.
- Jan. 13 – 9:10 p.m.
- Feb. 1 – 9:45 p.m.
- Feb. 2 – 6:56 p.m.
According to Collingswood Police, knowingly triggering a fire alarm when there's no emergency is a crime of the fourth degree that maxes out at $2,500 full-cash bail. Police have said that once the identity of the responsible party or parties is known, he, she or they will be charged accordingly with all offenses.
"There’s always going to be thjose kids that are messing around or those bad-egg adults who are causing problems," Davis said. "It really is a nuisance and a hassle to us because we’re a pretty busy fire department."
Davis acknowledged that sometimes the fire alarm in the building will be sounded accidentally—if someone smells burnt food, for example. But he also pointed out that investigating a nuisance alarm diverts the resources of the department from other, potentially more serious concerns.
"We have to go investigate it and make sure that there’s no specific reason [for the alarm]," Davis said. "It’s really a safety issue when you think about it."
Davis encouraged residents to be vigilant when they hear the fire alarm sounded. A peek into the hallway can be enough time to see someone fleeing the scene of a false alarm or to note the presence of smoke.