What happens at Certas AG if a fire alarm system or burglary alarm system runs out of power?

If we can still receive the signals at the alarm centre, we can still process them during a power cut.

  • At the customer’s premises: This depends on the power autonomy of the installed system and the transmission components. If, however, a signal cannot be sent or transmitted by a telecommunications provider due to a power failure at the customer’s premises, Certas cannot process any alarms. The customer is responsible for ensuring alarm transmission from the device to Certas.
  • Depending on the end device, customers have a connection to their provider for 0 – 4 hours, depending on how the end device and the communication devices are connected to the power supply. Please clarify with your system installer and your provider how your system is connected.
  • Transmission networks: Swisscom’s statements on autonomy range from 1 hour (e.g. for mobile transmission) to 4 hours for data transmission/SIP telephony for business customers.

What do regional power cuts mean for our customers? What do they mean for the branch offices of Certas AG and their alarm centres?

1. The local autonomy of the customer’s device can vary and must be clarified by the customer with the provider (Swisscom, Sunrise, etc.) and the system installer.

2. The transmission autonomy varies between 0 – 4 hours as described above.

3. Reception and processing by Certas are ensured by emergency generators. The alarm centre and its systems are supplied by emergency power supply. On the other hand, the administrative departments of Certas are affected during power cuts.

4. The availability of customers and intervention centres is only ensured if the necessary communication channels are guaranteed (landline, mobile, internet). Otherwise, Certas will only be able to reach the end customers and intervention services again after the power cut.

How do we prioritise incoming alarms in the event of major power cuts?

The incoming signals are processed by Certas in the same way as when other major disruptions (such as in the telecommunications network of Switzerland) occur.

  • Power failures cause that either only individual connection path fails (e.g. terrestrial internet fails, but communication via mobile network is still working) = non-critical connection troubles, - or all communication paths fail = critical connection trouble.
  • Roughly speaking, prioritisation is in the following sequence:
    • Real alarms
    • Critical troubles
    • Non-critical troubles

As the network monitoring agency of TUSNet, Certas AG processes numerous critical and non-critical troubles. How does Certas deal with these?

  • TUS customers who use AIN receive the fault reports automatically via AIN, thus reducing the burden on Certas.
  • The fault reports from TUS customers who do not use AIN land at the Certas alarm centre and are treated with priority as described above. In the event of major disruptions, the TUS has methods in place to suppress the flood of reports.

How long is the operational readiness of the Certas AG alarm centre ensured?

  • As a certified alarm centre, we comply with EN Norm 50518 and thus provide emergency power autonomy (UPS, diesel generator) within the action range of the alarm centre for at least 24 hours.
  • In the event of prolonged power cuts, it can be assumed that the communication capabilities of telecommunications providers are severely impaired. As Certas, we are even then ready to receive and process signals (for example, in the 4-hour window). However, we must assume that the necessary contact persons can no longer be reached by telephone (if mobile phone masts are only autonomous for at least 1 hour, for example).

How long do our emergency generators last?

At least 24 hours on diesel fuel, which can be extended accordingly by refuelling. At Certas, refuelling is regulated by processes at the locations.

ow is redundancy regulated in the event of power failures?

  • Certas’ reception facilities and alarm centres continue to operate even in the event of a power failure.
  • If the network of a communication provider in a region fails, the other Certas branch can receive an alarm signal.

How do we ensure that customers are alerted if we are no longer able to reach them by telephone?

In the event of a prolonged power failure in a region, customers may no longer be reachable by telephone (landline, mobile). In this case, Certas can no longer guarantee prompt alerting.