Scammer targets flood victim
MANY residents are still dealing with the aftermath of the flooding that has plagued the area over the past two months, and now another threat has emerged.
An elderly Warwick resident has fallen victim to a scammer, who callously targeted the woman at what he knew was an upsetting and vulnerable time of her life.
The Salvation Army welfare officer Glenda Gilham said she was contacted after the second round of flooding by a “very upset” woman, who said she had been swindled out of somewhere between $500 and $600.
Miss Gilham said the man had come to the woman’s door and asked her if she had been affected by the flooding. When she told him she had, he said he would check all of her electrical points and would require partial payment before work commenced.
She produced the cash and the man said he was going to get power tools and never returned.
“It can happen to anyone but the elderly are vulnerable so they get targeted,” Miss Gilham said.
“I just can’t believe somebody would stoop that low after everything with the floods.
“I tell people to keep the doors locked, ask them which company they are working for and ring them. If they can’t verify they’ve sent them don’t let them in and certainly don’t give them any money.”
The Building Services Authority general manager Ian Jennings is urging home owners to obtain at least two quotes before hiring contractors and to check license numbers with the BSA’s free online search.
“I cannot emphasise too strongly the importance of not paying money upfront and not paying for incomplete work,” he said. “I understand people want to get repairs and reconstruction started as soon as possible but taking your time now when engaging a contractor could save time and expense later.”
For more information visit www.bsa.qld.gov.au