CRANFORD, NJ - As part of a major renovation to the Cranford Police Department Communications Center, the hardware and software used by police to direct monitor burglar and fire alarms has been upgraded to ensure accurate emergency response and continuity in the event of unforeseen equipment or power issues.

The system, which underwent extensive testing in early December 2014, was activated on Dec. 22 and replaced components that had been last upgraded in 2004.  Included in the new alarm monitoring system are two modern Bosch alarm signal receivers and advanced security software that allows police dispatchers to monitor and view alarm information from four different computer terminals.

The Cranford Police Department has offered direct alarm monitoring for over 16 years.  According to Cranford Police Chief James Wozniak, the system has cost and security advantages for local residents and businesses.  “The biggest safety factor with this system is that there is no built in delay,” he stated.  “When an alarm comes in we immediately send police, fire or EMS personnel.”  The chief noted that many remote monitored or central station alarms companies wait a period of time and attempt to verify alarms with a homeowner before notifying public safety agencies. Chief Wozniak believes that “in an emergency, those one to two minutes could be critical.”

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The cost for direct monitoring by the Cranford Police Department, which has not increased with the system upgrades, is $95 per year for residential accounts and $200 per year for business accounts.  Third party companies often charge significantly higher rates, sometimes over $40 per month.  With the direct monitoring solution, the homeowner or business is responsible for the initial system installation, but police personnel are available to assist the installer with the connection to police headquarters.

 Residents or business owners interested in adding alarm monitoring service should contact Detective Sergeant Gerard Quinn at 908-709-7337.