Toronto Fire Services

False Fire Alarm Charges

False Alarm By-law overview:

The definition of a Nuisance False Alarm call is:

Nuisance:
Means the activation of a fire alarm system through a mechanical failure, equipment malfunction or improper maintenance or installation of the system, but does not include the activation of a fire alarm system where the activation occurred as a result of accidental damage to the system.

The definition of a Malicious False Alarm call is:

Malicious:
Means the negligent or intentional misuse of a fire alarm system resulting in an activation of the system, but does not include the activation of a fire alarm system under circumstances that would have caused a careful or prudent person to believe that a fire related emergency was in progress at the owner’s building or in circumstances where the owner has notified the Fire Department in advance of work being done on the fire alarm system that could cause a false fire alarm.

How to request a review

Any person or organization who has been assessed with a false fire alarm charge who wishes to appeal a response determined by the fire department as a false alarm may submit a letter requesting a review of the charges. Your letter must include reason for appeal and provide information to support your request that the incident was not a false fire alarm.

An alarm is considered false if it is determined that the alarm was cause through:

  • A mechanical failure
  • An equipment malfunction
  • Improper maintenance or installation of the system
  • The negligent or intentional misuse of a fire alarm system resulting in the activation of the system

When is an Alarm not considered False

An alarm will not be considered false if it is determined that the alarm was caused by:

  • A disaster such as earthquakes or severe weather conditions
  • Accidental damage to the system
  • Smoke or steam
  • Calls not initiated by a fire alarm system
  • CO detector activation
  • Fire alarm system testing involving the activation of the system where Fire Service has been notified
  • Vandalism/malicious causing damage where Toronto Police has been contacted to assist

Please mail, Email or fax your letter to:

False Fire Alarms Request for Review
Fire Services Headquarters
4330 Dufferin St, 3rd Floor
Toronto, ON M3H 5R9

Tel: 416-338-9148

Fax: 416-392-0954

Email: fireaccounting@toronto.ca

Requests will be reviewed within 30 days from receipt and you will receive a response in writing. To assist you in preparing your letter, please refer to the false alarm bylaw. You can access the bylaw at Toronto By-laws and Municipal Code.