Warning to shops over fire extinguisher scam

A WARNING has gone out to shopkeepers in Stalybridge after what they believed could be a fire extinguisher scam.

Corinne with one of the fire extinguishers in her Stalybridge shop ‘5 a day’

Corinne Lavis, from 5 a Day on Melbourne Street, was visited by a male wanting to check the fire extinguishers.

She said: “He told me he was from a company checking fire extinguishers and, as I was serving customers, he began looking at them.

“When the customers left he told me they were 10-years-old and needed changing.

“He wanted £149 plus VAT for each extinguisher, which I said was too expensive and I could not afford that.

“He then offered me one for £100, but again I said it was too expensive.

“As I refused his offer, he told me it was the law and my insurance would refuse to pay if there was a fire. He left the shop not happy.”

Corinne added she saw the man visit other businesses on Melbourne Street.

Stalybridge Town Facebook page included a post from an anonymous trader with a warning to others.

It read: “I’ve just had two guys in the shop about the fire extinguishers.

“They are dressed in blue jumpers with a logo and on first impression look as though they are from the fire service.

“The smaller guy acted like he was wanted to see if the fire extinguishers were serviced up to date then gave me a piece of paper that is from a company that services them.

“I’m not saying there is anything wrong with the company but he is definitely out to make you think he is from an organisation with authority. Can you let the other traders know they are just plying for trade.”

Dave Swallow, station manager at Stalybridge and Mossley Fire Station, offered advice to shopkeepers.

He said: “Every commercial business should have a fire risk assessment from a reputable company and, if required to have fire extinguishers, it is their responsibility to maintain them.

“If they have any concerns, the best advice is to get in touch with one of our fire protection officers who can give advice.”

Further information can be obtained from their website: manchesterfire.gov.uk

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