Travelling Conmen offering Bitumen/asphalt services
The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) is warning residents in South East Queensland about a group of known bitumen bandits operating in the area.
The men previously advertised their services in a number of Brisbane newspapers, but fled the area after being approached by Fair Trading investigators. Residents are urged to exercise extreme caution. The ads include misleading statements about surplus stock, limited time availability and discounts in order to entice consumers to respond.
The men, last seen driving trucks with Victorian licence plates, are known to perform sub-standard work using watered-down materials, and pressure residents into paying more money than originally agreed.The OFT is warning householders to be wary of bitumen layers who offer 'limited time only' price reductions and claim to have bitumen left over from another job. As these operators have placed ads in local papers instead of only soliciting business door-to-door like most itinerant traders, the OFT is concerned consumers may be less wary of them. Residents are reminded extra protections for door-to-door agreements do not apply if you make first contact with the trader, although you still have the usual protections under the Australian Consumer Law. If these or other traders do approach you door-to-door, ensure you know your rights. Residents are urged to be wary if approached by traders offering bitumen laying or other home maintenance in return for upfront cash payment.
Bitumen bandits often perform substandard work using watered-down materials and leave without completing the job.
It is illegal for door-to-door traders to take any upfront payments or deposits for services valued at more than $100. Door-to-door traders must leave premises immediately if asked to do so.
Consumers must be given a 10 business day cooling-off period and be provided with documentation to enable them to cancel the contract at any stage during this period.
Residents should also be wary of traders with no business address or those that can only cite a post office box, suite number, email address or mobile phone as their contact details.
Any person who has concerns about traders who have approached them door-to-door should take notes about the trader and the registration number of their vehicle, and contact the Office of Fair Trading via: www.fairtrading.qld.gov.au or call 13 QGOV (13 74 68).
Link to office of fair trading departmental link : Here