Audible intruder and vehicle alarms can cause considerable disturbance if they malfunction. The Council has the following powers to deal with malfunctioning alarms.
Audible intruder alarms
We can investigate complaints about malfunctioning alarms if the alarm is:
- Ringing continuously for more than 20 minutes
- Ringing intermittently for more than one hour
- Sounding frequently and causing a noise nuisance
If we cannot contact someone to silence the alarm, we can take enforcement action to silence the alarm and charge the owner/occupier for the cost of these works.
We will silence the external bell if that is all that is required. However, if an internal alarm is causing the problem, we may have to obtain a warrant of entry in order to force entry into the property, if necessary, and silence the alarm. This may involve replacing locks. Any costs incurred will be charged to the owner/occupier.
If you have an audible intruder alarm, you can help yourself (and your neighbours) by making sure it is well maintained and has a working cut off device that stops the alarm sounding for more than 20 minutes. In addition, although it is not a legal requirement, we strongly recommend that you notify the Council of your contact details and the contact details of your keyholders, so that we can contact someone in the event of a malfunction.
If we receive a report of a malfunctioning vehicle alarm, we will try to contact the owner to inform them of the problem. If we are unable to contact someone to silence the alarm, we will visit to confirm that the alarm is causing a nuisance.
If it is, and we are unable to locate the owner, we will consider taking formal action under the Environmental Protection Act 1990 to silence the alarm.
We can serve a notice on the vehicle and employ a contractor to either break into the vehicle to silence the alarm and then resecure the vehicle, or if this is not possible, tow the vehicle to a secure compound.
All costs incurred by the Council are recoverable from the owner of the vehicle.
If you are being disturbed by a vehicle alarm that is malfunctioning, please provide us with the following details:
- Registration number
- Make and model
- Colour of vehicle
Please provide any relevant information which will allow us to contact the registered keeper directly at the time of our visit.
Report a nuisance
Please report nuisance alarms relating to residential properties to:
Residential and Environmental Health Team
Tel: 020 8891 7737
Report all other nuisance alarms relating to vehicles, commericial and construction properties to:
Commercial Environmental Health Team
Tel: 020 8891 7117
We also operate a weekend noise service for nuisance alarm reports. You can contact us on 07944 038 495 at the following times:
- Fridays between 10pm - 3am
- Saturday between 10pm - 3am