Smoke Detector Code Violation 8.44.100. June – October 2015

On Jun 23, 2015, at 12:35 PM, Jenny Lens wrote:


By law (code below), landlord is required to maintain smoke detectors. #15 Smoke detector with low/dead battery or broken. I repeatedly stood outside #15 door to locate loud chirping.

Pls remove the offending battery NOW. Imagine hearing a loud chirping every couple of minutes. Around the clock.

Alison MacKenzie, #6, told me several months ago she reported this to both Donna (while in laundry room) and spoke with Ross Gentry. She said constant chirping of a low/dead battery or broken smoke detector.

Alison told me Ross said smoke detectors don’t go bad nor do they chirp.

For several YEARS, I’ve tried to locate this sound. Only because #15 door is open, I recognized tell-tale sound of a smoke detector chirping. I was stunned when Alison told she and her boyfriend Rick heard it that long too.

Shocked she reported the problem and told there’s no problem.

I expect battery removed NOW. Every 90-180 seconds or so, we hear this loud chirping.

I hear it in my kitchen! I heard it all Saturday and Sunday. Verified when I repeatedly walked over and heard it. I heard it thru my earplugs, worn in my living room.

Thank you for your prompt attention to this Safety Hazard! Smoke detectors are installed to keep us safe.

Replace the unit or battery soon. Remove the battery so it stops chirping. NOW.

— Smoke Detectors: Santa Monica Municipal Code:

8.44.100 Smoke detectors—Existing residential occupancies.

(e)   Maintenance. Smoke detectors shall be maintained in an operable condition at all times. Detectors shall be tested, maintained and cleaned at least annually by the building owner. Proof of maintenance and cleaning shall be maintained by the building owner for a minimum of five years. New batteries shall be installed in smoke detectors annually or in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions. When it is determined that any installed smoke detector was manufactured more than ten years prior to the effective date of this Chapter, it shall be replaced.

— Why do smoke alarms chirp intermittently?

The “chirp” will only be caused by issues surrounding the battery or miss-wiring.

— Why is My Smoke Alarm Beeping?

“Smoke alarms are essential to ensure that any fire in your home is detected quickly enough for it to be put out without causing extensive damage to life or property. However, a smoke alarm that keeps beeping when there is no fire can be a major irritant that alarms small children and pets and causes you to lose sleep. If any of the smoke alarms in your home is beeping or chirping at regular intervals you need to take steps to stop this.”

Thank you,
Jenny Lens, #18
2600 Virginia Ave

On Sep 29, 2015 2:06 PM, “Jenny Lens” <> wrote:


I sit quietly by front door and study many afternoons. Today I heard smoke detector chirping again. I followed it best I could. Appears to be #15 again.

I look forward to it being repaired. Then I can enjoy the quiet you insist upon.

Hope you and Donna are well.

Thank you,
Jenny Lens #18, Bldg 6

On Sep 30, 2015, at 1:44 PM, RHB BLDG6 <> wrote:


It’s good to know u can diagnose a smoke detector problem without even inspecting at it.

That’s a remarkable talent.

Our noise concern is unecessary and excessively loud voices, including shouting and boisterous laughter that can be heard throughout the enclosed courtyard because it traps and amplifies even normal voices; not the intermittent chirping of a smoke detector.

And by the way, the tenant in unit #15 has complained to me in writing about you snooping outside her front door & windows. That’s called “causing a nuisance” and must cease immediately.

[Her inside door was open. I merely asked if her Sunny were there. She said No Sunny. I asked if she still lived there. She said No Sunny. She then SLAMMED the door in my face. That’s snooping? I wrote Sunny and she still lives there. Plus Mergery told me that woman threatened HER. So who is the harasser?]

It’s a tenant’s responsibility to notify us about issues in their unit. It’s really none if your business what occurs in another unit unless you’re aware of a dire energency.

You aren’t the property’s designated ombudsman.

[THAT NOISE might indicate trouble somewhere. And it’s freakin’ annoying!! Chased me out of my own living room.]

Ross Gentry

From: Jenny Lens []
Sent: Wednesday, September 30, 2015 2:06 PM
Subject: Re: Again, Smoke Detector: Fix Loud, Continual Broken/Low/Dead Battery

Dear Ross,

Snooping? I walk by ALL the units. I stand outside #17 or my unit, 18, 19, 20 and watch the sun set. I NEVER ever stand, stare or shudder, photograph outside anyone’s unit. 

I stare at plants, trees, sunsets. IF they see me, I’m looking at sunsets and clouds, as I have LONG before they ever moved into this building. I haven’t the slightest interest in what goes in inside ANY unit. I am only concerned with inanimate objects. Esp when they are designed to protect, not annoy us.

Smoke detectors are loud, high pitched and insistent. I spend a lot of time trying to figure out the sound. That is why I always say I THINK it’s this unit or that.

The noise is extremely upsetting and disturbing to me. I have the right to mention it. Especially when it might violate codes re smoke detectors. 

I have the LEGAL right and duty to report a possible problem with a faulty smoke detector.

Thank you,
Jenny Lens

Date: September 30, 2015 6:25:24 PM PDT


The so-called “noise” doesn’t seem to bother anyone else, including the tenant in the unit that’s the alleged source of the noise.

[Ask Alison MacKenzie, Unit #6, or Jill, visiting #14, wondered what was the noise. She is moving into #8. Ask Sam and his room-mates in #7. Go ahead.~ Jenny]

Maybe other tenants don’t want you lurking outside their units. And I don’t appreciate “demands” like “Fix Loud, Continual Broken/Low/Dead Battery”. You don’t have the right to give me orders…stop the nonsense.

And you’re not an attorney, so continually referring to the law and legal rights in your missives is inappropriate.

[Really, it’s inappropriate to report maintenance issues and refer to the law? Really? Inappropriate to censor and silence my First Amendment Rights.]

However, you’re welcome to file a complaint with the city about this matter and by the time it’s processed (weeks), I’ll have already taken action on this minor issue.

Ross Gentry
RHB Management Company

Author: anat

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