By Associated Press - Saturday, July 30, 2016

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) - Sioux Falls Fire Rescue says it has received has several false emergency reports as a result of prank phone calls to businesses. Fire Chief Jim Sideras says false alarms impact the safety of the community by using “resources ineffectively.” Authorities say the fire department does not contact citizens or businesses by phone to initiate building evacuations. Fire alarm companies also do not contact businesses and instruct them to initiate a fire alarm.

Reporting a false alarm is a misdemeanor with a penalty of one year in jail. Reporting a false alarm that results in a serious injury or death is a felony resulting in five years of imprisonment in the state penitentiary.

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