Feature of the week

December 11, 1999

False Alarm Reduction Feature #11

Call Waiting Cancel One of the most popular features available to telephone company customers today is call waiting. This feature allows the customer to hear an alert tone or sound while talking on the phone that indicates another person is calling their number. The customer then has the option to switch over to the new caller and possibly make arrangements to call them back after they've completed their initial call. While this feature is a great convenience to phone company customers, its implementation can prevent a central station operator from verifying an alarm and lead to an unnecessary dispatch of the police or fire departments. If the operator calls while the alarm panel is online with the receiver, she will only hear the phone ringing as call waiting does not provide a busy signal. This may lead her to conclude that no one is at the account.To prevent this possibility, the panel must be able to cancel call waiting any time it dials the receiver phone number to send a report. DMP panels accomplish this by allowing up to 15 digits for each receiver phone number and can easily accept the * (star) 7 0 P (pause) call waiting cancel code prefix. Once the * 7 0 P code is programmed, the panel cancels call waiting anytime it dials the receiver phone number. If the central station operator calls the account while the panel is online with the receiver, she'll hear a busy signal and be able to make a decision to call back after a few seconds and attempt to reach an authorized user on site before dispatching.

False Alarm Prevention By accepting up to 15 digits for each receiver phone number, the panel can dial the call waiting cancel code and allow a central station operator calling to verify an alarm to hear a busy signal instead of the standard ringing signal.