University Response to New Fire Alarm Ordinance
William Properzio, Director, Environmental Health and Safety
On July 1, 2005 the City of Gainesville implemented a new ordinance related to false fire alarms. The ordinance requires an annual registration fee for all alarm systems and provides for the assessment of fines for false alarms, the purpose of the ordinance being to reduce the occurrence of false fire alarms which in turn require response by emergency personnel. By definition a false alarm is any activation of the alarm system that is not initiated by a fire related cause.
The University is not subject to this new ordinance. However, the City is continuing to distribute registration notices announcing the need to register alarms and starting October 1, 2005, will begin assessing fines for false fire alarms. These notices have been sent or are being sent to individual buildings and departments.
Although the University is not subject to this ordinance, the University strongly supports the City’s goal of reducing false fire alarms and to that end has implemented a number of measures aimed at reducing the incidences of false fire alarms.. This includes an expanded role for the University Police in response to alarms and an enhanced monitoring and response program to determine and correct the cause of all false alarms.
Departments should not register or pay fine notices that they may receive. Any permit, invoice, fine notice or other communications received by a department relating to the new false fire alarm ordinance should be forwarded promptly to the Environmental Health and Safety, Building 179, P.O. Box 112190, for handling.