Ryedale District Council

Burglar alarm keyholder registration

Audible intruder alarms are widely used to protect property from unauthorised entry and are often required by insurance companies. Burglar alarms that are sounding should be reported to the Police, so that evidence of criminal activity can be investigated. Unfortunately they can be subject to a fault in the system causing a noise problem for neighbours.

A Code of Practice on Noise from Audible Intruder Alarms 1982 was introduced to provide guidance to alarm installers and owners on how to reduce noise from alarms. In order to minimise any disturbance you should ensure that:

  • Your alarm system is properly designed, installed and maintained to prevent false alarms. British standards 4737 sets standards for the installation and maintenance of the alarm. Check with your installer that the system complies with this standard.
  • Your system should be fitted with an automatic cut-off device to stop the alarm ringing after about 20 minutes. Most modern alarms have a flashing light that keeps flashing after the audible warning has ceased.
  • An alarm should be regularly serviced and maintained to prevent any faults developing.
  • Identify a "nominated key holder" such as a nearby friend, neighbour or relative who can access your property and, if need be silence the alarm in your absence.
  • Speak to your neighbours and give them the name and contact number of your nominated key holder for them to contact
  • Advise the police of the details of your nominated key holders

Over the years, as alarms have become more sophisticated and audible alarm cut off devices have been introduced, the Council has discontinued its voluntary key holders register. However you may wish to liaise with the police and your neighbours to ensure that nuisance is not caused due to the operation of your alarm should a fault occur.

If an alarm is sounding for an extended period of time and it is found to be causing a statutory nuisance to local residents the Council will try to find the owner or occupier of the property. If this fails the Council can issue an abatement notice requiring the alarm to be silenced. If necessary the Council can carry out the works in default to silence the alarm by disconnecting it. If this action is required the owner or occupier will be liable for any costs incurred.

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