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10/26/11

Permalink 08:22:48 pm, by advproinc, 457 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: Welcome

Increased Break-Ins in Suburban Communities

At Advantage Protection Inc. we have been noticing that the rise in break-ins in Portland and Vancouver have seemed to be making their way into even the less populated suburban communities like Camas and Washougal as well as Battle Ground and Troutdale. In searching for a topic for this week’s blog, I noticed that many of the articles on break-ins locally were in these areas, where you would think are less likely to be targeted by criminals. As criminals for the most part are foolish, most are not necessarily dumb. Many adapt and go where there is the highest reward with the lowest risk, finding that many homeowners outside of the metro areas are waiting until the break in occurs before adding the detection and verification necessary to protect their home and their family.

Waiting until something bad has happened until you protect yourself is definitely not the most intelligent way to go about it. Do you wait until you get into a car accident and injure yourself before you start to wear your seatbelt? No. Why? Because we know seatbelts work to keep us safe and can save lives. Same is true with an effective alarm system with verification.

Owning and operating the only UL listed monitoring center in Clark County gives us the ability to not only monitor and detect events occurring in your security system, but also the ability to look in and see and/or hear a crime in progress, which we then are able to dispatch directly to the necessary responders to arrive as fast as possible. Adding the correct equipment, such as a video surveillance system, the criminal is much more likely to be apprehended so they end up in the place that they belong, jail.

Possibly the top misconception about adding a monitored camera solution to your home, is that our monitoring center is always watching and that they can look in at any time they want, which we all would agree is a lack of privacy. In reality, your cameras would work in conjunction with your burglar alarm and would only be viewed in the case of an event that our monitoring center detects in the system. This ability to identify a true event as opposed to a false alarm, gives us the means necessary to dispatch police immediately to give the highest possible chance of apprehension and retention of property.

Now is the time to invest in the safety of your family as well as your home. Don’t wait until you have already been violated. Give us at Advantage Protection Inc. a call today to have us come assess your needs and give you the information necessary to make an informed decision that could protect you for a lifetime.

10/24/11

Permalink 07:48:24 pm, by advproinc, 486 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: Welcome, Life Safety Information, Other Resources

Happy Halloween!

HALLOWEEN! It’s about that time of the year again and Advantage Protection Inc. wants you to know that your safety is a top priority around here. Next Monday, parents and their eager little ghouls and goblins will be gearing up to hit the neighborhoods for an evening of trick or treating. While this is a time for little ones to have fun and stuff their little bellies with treats, parents shouldn’t let the kids’ enthusiasm and sugar high drown out the common sense. There can be many hazards associated with Halloween.

Here are a few tips to help keep your children safe:

    • Make sure children wear bright, reflective costumes when they go trick-or-treating at night. If their costumes blend into the dark, give them glow sticks to carry, or place strips of reflective tape on their costumes or trick-or-treat bags to make sure drivers and others can spot them in the darkness. On average, twice as many children are killed while walking on Halloween as compared to any other day of the year, according to Safe Kids USA, a national child safety advocacy organization.

    • Don’t allow children to wear face paint without testing it first to make sure it doesn’t irritate their skin or trigger allergies.

    • Don’t allow children to wear decorative, non-prescription contact lenses. These have been known to cause damage to eyes as well as hinder one’s sight in the dark.

    • Make sure store-bought costumes and accessories such as wigs, hats and masks, are flame-retardant. The label should clearly state that. If it doesn’t, don’t buy it.

    • Don’t leave candles burning unattended. According to the National Fire Protection Association, Halloween is one of the top five days for candle fires. Try votive candles instead, and keep jack-o-lanterns away from curtains. Or why not opt for electric lights? They give all the ghostly glow without the risk of burning the house down or igniting a costume.

    • Don’t let children wear costumes that are too long. They could get caught in car doors or could trail too close to candles.

    • Children who are younger than 12 years old should not be allowed to go trick or treating by themselves. Always have a grown up or responsible young adult with children at all times.

    • Be sure to examine all your children’s treat for signs of tampering and choking hazards, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention cautions. Children should not eat homemade treats made by strangers.

    • Only allow your little monsters to knock at well lit, well known neighbor’s homes. Never allow them to enter someone’s home that you do not know.

    • Don’t let younger children carve pumpkins. Let them draw the outlines onto pumpkins, but leave the carving to an adult.

Keep these simple tips in mind while out on Halloween to keep it a safe and fun experience for you and your children. Happy Halloween!

10/18/11

Permalink 06:33:20 pm, by advproinc, 718 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: Welcome, New Product Information, Other Resources

Introducing Total Connect Remote Services

With seemingly every internet and cable provider around beginning to offer an option to add security to a home or business, the alarm industry has just gotten even more competitive. At Advantage Protection Inc., we still believe what we have to offer is far and away the best solution for every customer. Whether you want to remotely view an event with your SmartPhone from your home or office camera system or control the temperature of your thermostat, we have a comprehensive service made possible by Honeywell called Total Connect that is the answer for you.

Being a truly local company we not only have the ability to lean on our UL listed monitoring center, which is the only one in Clark County, we can also lean on our support team which is available 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. The same cannot be said for many of these companies who you would be lucky to get anything but their notorious 3-4 hour window of when they are available to come out and address an issue. Our support staff is ready to help at all hours of the day or night to ensure your security is just that, secure.

If your home could talk to you, what would it say? Whether a door has been opened, a valuable has been moved or a flood has been detected, you can know right away. All you need is your laptop or mobile phone to stay in the know and stay in control. With Total Connect Remote Services, if it's happening in your home, it's happening on your phone.

    • Control your security system remotely.

    • Know exactly when your security system has been armed/disarmed.

    • See when someone enters or exits your home.

    • Find out when motion is detected in a pool area, patio or driveway.

    • Protect indoor valuables like antiques, heirlooms, and electronics from theft by receiving an alert when they have been moved or disturbed.

    • Instantly know if leaks or floods are detected, giving you the information necessary to minimize structural damage, property loss, and dangerous conditions.

    • Decide who has access to your home and when by setting up temporary codes for housekeepers, babysitters, and guests.

    • Receive alerts for extreme temperatures, which can help indicate power failure or a problem with a furnace or air conditioner.

    • Know if your vacation home or investment property is occupied.

If you’re looking to check up on the babysitter check in on your grandparents, keep up with your kids or just keep them close, we can put peace of mind in the palm of your hand with Total Connect Video Services.

    • Look in on your nanny any time of day to see how she interacts with your children.

    • Keep track of your kids' busy schedules and know when they come and go.

    • Check up on your pets while you are away.

    • Know instantly if off-limits areas like medicine, liquor or gun cabinets have been accessed.

    • See if your kids are doing their homework or playing video games.

    • Maintain a connection to elderly relatives who live independently but may require extra care and attention.

    • See that a delivery has arrived.

Take a look at the link below to see the Total Connect Video Services in action

http://www.mytotalconnect.com/security/videoservices.php

The newest function of Total Connect gives you the ability to control your comfort from anywhere in the home or anywhere in the world. How? Simply login to your Total Connect Comfort account and instantly:

    • View and change your HVAC system settings (Heat, Cool, Off, Auto, Emergency Heat)

    • View and set the temperature

    • View indoor humidity

    • View outdoor temperature and humidity (*footnote: when used with an outdoor sensor)

    • Access multiple thermostats if your system is zoned

    • Access multiple locations if if more than one system is registered

    • Automatically upgrade to new features once they become available.

    • Receive system performance and other alerts via email

So whether you want to keep a vacation home at a reasonable temperature throughout the year, ensure a comfortable environment for your children while you’re at work during the summer months or any number of other useful applications, Total Connect and Advantage Protection give you what you never had before, ultimate control.

10/10/11

Permalink 07:48:52 pm, by advproinc, 775 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: Welcome, Other Resources, Company News

Getting to Know Our Team: Joe Keller, President

Due to October being National Fire Safety Month, a particularly important one to us here at Advantage Protection Inc., the weekly news blog looks a little different. We pushed our “Getting to Know our Team” section to the second week as opposed the usual first week of the month.

That being said, the team member we are going to get to know this month is our Commander in Chief, if you will, Joe Keller. As the President of Advantage Protection Inc. Joe has the final say in all of the decisions that have to do with this business, decisions that have led us in the direction of being an area leader in alarm sales, installation, service, and monitoring since 1975. With Joe at the helm, Advantage Protection has also attained a BBB (Better Business Bureau) A+ Rating, which is the highest awarded to a business and speaks directly to our commitment to great customer service as well as the customer satisfaction achieved.

When exactly did you become the President of API, and how did it come to be?

I became owner in 1986.

Do you have a vision for this company moving forward?

Yes, the vision here is to acquire and maintain accounts through internal and organic growth by capitalizing on our UL listed regional monitoring center.

What about the alarm Industry made it the place you wanted to be for so long? The opportunities in the electronics field with the opportunity to provide a service while giving piece of mind to our customers over their property and themselves.

When hiring a new employee, what kind of person are you specifically looking for?

The most important thing is integrity, based on an ability to be truthful and understand the concept of a duty. Now duty to me, is not only doing your job, but doing your job the correct way.

What were some previous jobs?

I was a Navy pilot. I also worked at other alarm companies while going to college.

What has been the biggest hurdle in owning a small business in this industry? The biggest hurdle in most small businesses in this country has got to be government interference and capitalization. The constant government bureaucracies on so many levels make it very difficult on small businesses.

Where did you grow up?

I grew up mainly in the Pacific Northwest. I lived up in the Seattle area for a time growing up and went to high school in Tigard.

Outside of work, what are some of your hobbies?

I enjoy getting out on my tractor and cultivating my fields, going to air races, watching football at a bar with my friends, scuba diving, as well as boating.

Alma Mater?

Oregon State Beavers. Reason being, post-Vietnam ROTC programs were few and far between at universities across the U.S. and Oregon State University had a great Navy ROTC, and that’s what I wanted to do; fly planes in the Navy.

What was scariest moment in your life?

My very first flight in the Navy as a student, we came astoundingly close to colliding with another training plane mid-air. Definitely one of the scariest moments even though it happened so incredibly fast.

What is your favorite musician/band?

Of all time… I really enjoy Neil Diamond. Growing up I loved the Beach Boys and the Beatles.

What is your secret to success?

I never have failed at anything because I will not quit anything. I attribute most of that point of view to the military and more specifically flight school where I encountered numerous people who were smarter and more able to succeed, drop out. Going through that environment gave me the outlook that perseverance and dedication to a task gives you the ability to accomplish anything.

What is your favorite movie?

The Blue Max has to be my favorite movie, aviation-wise.

Rumor has is that you know all the lyrics to the Righteous Brothers song, “You’ve Lost that Lovin’ Feelin’. True or False?

False. (while laughing)

Roughly estimating, how many countries have you visited while in the military?

I would say I have been to roughly 25 countries.

That being said, what is the one place you have never been that you would most want to visit before you die?

I would love to go to Europe. While in the Navy I was WesPac, so I was mainly in the Pacific Ocean and occasionally over toward the Indian Ocean and Africa.

While a pilot in the U.S. Navy, what type of plane were you mostly flying?

My primary warfare specialty was the P3C Orion which was an anti-sub, anti-ship, mine warfare, and over the horizon long range land based aircraft.

10/05/11

Permalink 08:04:42 pm, by advproinc, 722 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: Welcome, Life Safety Information, Other Resources

October: Fire Safety Month

Fire Safety Month is something that we here at Advantage Protection Inc. take very seriously. Reason being is that fire protection in the form of fire system installation as well as the monitoring of those systems, is one of our main focuses as a business. This is a very specific area that we can significantly improve the safety of our local resident communities, as well as institutional and commercial buildings in the greater Portland/Vancouver areas.

Fires are a leading cause of home related injury and death, so take time to reach people of every age in your community and help reduce the number of injuries. First and foremost, back to the basics. If your clothing catches on fire, the most effective method of extinguishing the fire is to stop, drop to the ground, and roll back and forth to smother the flame. Don't run around because it fans the flames adding oxygen which fuels a fire. It is important not to panic and just remember the saying we all learned in kindergarten, STOP, DROP, and ROLL.

The National Fire Protection Agency has some tips and facts to help you keep your homes and businesses safe.

Smoke detectors save lives

• Working smoke detectors reduce the chances of death in a fire by half.

• Nearly 900 lives could be saved annually if every home had working smoke detectors.

• Nearly half of all fire survivors remember hearing their smoke alarm.

• Deaths due to fire have decreased by half since the invention of the smoke detector.

• Most deaths due to fire occur at night when people are sleeping.

Smoke detector maintenance

The most common cause of smoke detector failure is missing or disconnected batteries.

• Missing, disconnected, or dead batteries account for 73% of smoke detector failures.

• There are more homes with no working smoke detectors than there are homes without any smoke detectors at all. There are millions of homes in each category.

• Smoke detectors should be installed on every level of your home.

• Change your batteries twice a year.

• Be sure to clean your detectors annually.

• Replace the entire unit every ten years.

• Disconnecting your batteries, for any reason, is dangerous and illegal! Don’t do it!

Smoke detectors are just a start

• Smoke detectors only wake you up, unless they are monitored. Invest in monitored smoke detectors to notify the proper authorities in case of a fire, as soon as the alarm detects smoke.

• Have a Plan! Know tonight what you will do if you are ever woken up by your smoke detectors.

• Pass along the information. Make sure your family and friends know also.

Don't leave appliances unattended when in use

One of the most common reasons for fires is people leaving stoves, ovens, toasters, clothing irons, barbecues, and candles unattended. Therefore one must always be aware when using the aforementioned appliances.

Get out and stay out

Each year, many people are injured or killed because they re-enter their burning homes. If you have escaped safely, stay safe and stay out. Saving a pet or favorite necklace is not worth your life.

Firefighters are your friends

One of the most critical jobs of a firefighter is search and rescue. For young children, it is important that firefighters are seen as people they can follow and trust. A firefighter in firefighting gear breathing with an air tank can be scary. One way a child can get used to or trust a firefighter is seeing a firefighter dress up step by step seeing that it is a person inside. Also being able to walk up and touch the firefighter can reassure the child that he or she is a real person. (This has already been implemented by many fire departments across the US during Fire Prevention Week.)

>Don’t play with fire Playing with fire causes many unnecessary emergencies. Be responsible when dealing with heat and fire.

False alarms kill

False alarms waste valuable manpower and resources, which may be needed desperately at a real emergency. Also, any time firefighters ride trucks, they are at risk. Eighteen percent of firefighter deaths occur while responding to calls.

If you are not fully protected at home, take the necessary steps to keep you and your family safe and call us here at Advantage Protection Inc. We can help.

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