How to Reduce False Fire Alarms

Approximately a third of all callouts to the fire services over a year are false alarms, wasting valuable time and potentially risking lives, with an even higher number of false fire alarms wasting employees’ time by evacuating unnecessarily. Fire alarms can be falsely triggered for a range of reasons, and can be dangerous to people within the building. In order to reduce the number of false fire alarms your premises has this year, we’ve listed some steps to take below.

Top causes of false alarms

False fire alarms can occur for any business, causing employees to unnecessarily evacuate the building and wasting everyone’s time. The top causes of false alarms are:

  • Alarms automatically alerting fire services when triggered
  • Burnt food
  • Steam/aerosol sprays
  • Accidental triggering
  • Deliberate
  • Poor fire alarm maintenance or a faulty system

Why do we need to reduce false fire alarms?

False fire alarms not only waste people’s time, but they can also be dangerous and even cost lives. With the fire authorities time wasted going out to false alarms, people in real danger are at risk.

What’s more, if your business has frequent false fire alarms, it is likely that staff will quickly become complacent and no longer react to the alarm. In the case of a real emergency, fatalities could occur due to people failing to react and evacuate the building.


In order to reduce the number of false fire alarms within your premises, take the following steps:

  • Establish the cause

The cause behind false fire alarms can vary depending on your business, location, and a number of other factors. Establish the most common reasons why the fire alarm is falsely triggered in your premises, whether this is because of people burning food, a faulty system, or even dust accumulating around the detectors.

  • Tackle the causes

Once you have established the root causes that are triggering your system, you can put plans in place to avoid this happening again. You may relocate the food preparation area in the office to one area, or ban food substances that seem to burn frequently, for example. Alternatively, if you find that the alarm is often triggered deliberately, installing CCTV cameras may be an effective deterrent.

  • Regular fire alarm maintenance

All commercial buildings require regular fire alarm maintenance checks in order to ensure they are constantly functioning should a fire ever occur. If your maintenance checks reveal a fault with the system, having this repaired is essential.

If you’re in need of an efficient fire alarm system for your commercial premises, speak to our team here at Cheshire Fire. We’re are on hand to provide assistance with your fire safety equipment needs.

We provide tailored fire risk assessments to determine the alarm system most suited to your specific premises, and can assist you with the maintenance of your system to ensure your obligations under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order are upheld.