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URL:  http://boards.fool.com/i-just-came-over-here-from-hot-topics-its-an-20197736.aspx

Subject:  Re: Brinks — is it worth it? Date:  1/22/2004  5:33 PM
Author:  PosNetWorth Number:  45034 of 129123

I just came over here from Hot Topics -- it's an interesting discussion, to be sure, but a lot of it to me seems to be about psychology. Does it offer you peace of mind? For me, it doesn't.

I worked fire/rescue in a major metropolitan area [a decade ago], and from the perspective of seeing the response to these alarms, I almost certainly wouldn't pay for the monitoring. They were responded to differently -- not in a less timely manner, but with fewer people, because it was assumed to start with that it would end up being a false alarm. If an automatic home fire alarm went off, two firefighters would show up at the house. A home alarm for an in-progress burglary would bring one cop [I think]. It wasn't until someone got there and confirmed that it was real that they'd send out the response level that the first telephone call from a human being would bring. (I never experienced the mention someone had of an "under duress" response from the alarm company -- almost always, no one was home.)

False alarms were such a problem that they started fining offenders, after you got the first one or two for free.

I can't recall a single fire or injury during my days there where we were notified via alarm system.

To whether they deter theives? That wouldn't require paying the monthly monitoring cost.

-- Laura


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