Officials with the Kern County Fire Department are warning the public of a fire inspection scam that is operating in Central and Southern California.
KCFD officials said on Thursday that past records indicated that an individual will arrive unannounced at a commercial building implying that they represent an enforcement agency or an insurance underwriter to perform an inspection at no charge to the tenant.
KCFD warns that once the inspection is completed, the form is presented for endorsement and handed back to the business owner.
A few days later the inspection form (now with fees up to $500) and an attached corresponding invoice arrives by mail for payment.
Officials notes that some businesses will receive an invoice by mail that have not received an inspection for the service.
KCFD have some steps that can protect you from this scam:
Step 1 Educate Your Staff – This is your business and you have the right to refuse access to anyone you don’t know.
Step 2 Check Credentials – Every Fire Department Inspector has a uniform, badge, and county/city identification card; request to see them or have staff request a scheduled inspection with the owner.
Step 3 Report – If you are unsure about the validity of any safety inspector contact the Kern County Fire Department Fire Prevention/Code Enforcement Unit at 661-391-7080 or your Law Enforcement Agency.