By Glenn Collins
Tuesday, June 8, 2010 | 10:06 AM
A scam that affected the Florence area last year has moved to Haleyville and a local business was visited yesterday by someone claiming to be commercial fire systems inspector. This person was seeking a cash transaction to "inspect" the fire systems. When informed by the business owner that the Fire Marshall was being called, the person fled the scene. Should someone unknown to you or your business approach you about conducting inspections, verify this person's identity and that of his company.
The Better Business Bureau of North Alabama and the City of Florence Fire Marshall warned businesses last year to be alert to non-licensed companies who may solicit work to conduct inspections on fire extinguishers and chemical hood units. City of Florence Fire Marshall Jeff Perkins reports that a number of Shoals area businesses have contacted him after they were approached by a company to perform inspections on their commercial fire extinguishers and related equipment on multiple occasions in a short period of time.
The BBB has investigated state and local fire codes and finds that these codes only require that extinguishers be inspected on an annual basis. In addition, the BBB learned that the codes also require that the inspections be done by a licensed business.
The BBB suggests the following to businesses: Verify that the company currently providing inspections of your fire equipment is properly licensed to do so; be aware that an inspection from a non-licensed company could result in a fine from the local Fire Marshall; and, keep in mind that a company must be licensed where your business is located, not necessarily where the inspection company itself is located.