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Residents in Nailsea warned to be wary of rogue traders

Hand putting the door chain on
Always use the door chain or viewer for unexpected callers

We are asking residents in Nailsea and the surrounding areas to be vigilant following a number of rogue traders reported across the area.

A number of incidents were reported between 19 and 30 July at properties on Beechwood Road, Ridgeway, Ash Hayes Road, Heathfield Road and Nailsea Park.

All of the incidents happened during the day and involved a varying number of men approaching home owners offering for work to be done on their property.

In each of the instances, elderly and/or vulnerable occupants were targeted and offered quotes for work to be carried out, only for the suspects to demand large sums of money to complete the work.

In one incident, police successfully worked with the public and partner agencies to thwart an attempt to defraud a victim of £3000.

In light of these recent incidents, residents are encouraged to take note of the following crime prevention advice, particularly regarding being alert to rogue traders and distraction burglaries:

• Never open the door to an unexpected caller until you’ve checked their identification – use a door chain or viewer, intercom or a ‘smart’ doorbell. Genuine callers expect it.

• If you’re not sure, don’t open the door.

• Never agree to have work done or part with money on your doorstep and ideally get written quotes from at least two traders for any work. Always agree a start and finish date and agree a price before any work starts on your home.

• If you are suspicious of a caller tell us straight away – ring 999 if you feel threatened or intimidated, otherwise call 101.

• Store any high value items such as jewellery, passports and cash in a properly secured and hidden safe or bank vault.

• Keep windows and doors secured if you’re not in the room and never keep large sums of money in the house.

• If you see someone calling door-to-door, but only on frail or elderly neighbours, call 999 straight away.

• Ask a trusted neighbour to help you deal with unexpected callers.

• Look out for vulnerable and elderly neighbours and make sure they know what to do when they receive an unexpected caller.

• Join Neighbourhood Watch.

• If you think you’ve been deceived, are concerned about a trader or have any doubts call 101 or Citizens Advice Consumer Services. More details here: https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/consumer/