Police warning around mattress seller

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Police are warning residents in the West Lancs area that a man is approaching schools in a van trying to sell beds and mattresses.

A number of incidents have been reported to us in the Tarleton, Hesketh Bank and Banks areas over the past few days.

A man is wondering the school play grounds at home time dishing out cards to parents advertising the sale of these items.

Lee Ormandy from Trading Standards said, “Trading Standards advice is never to buy anything from a stranger out of the back of van, should something go wrong they will have taken your money and it is unlikely you will ever be able to contact them again.

“These sellers can be quite insistent and pushy but don’t be pressurized into making snap decisions. Mattresses are required to comply with specific safety regulations and because the source of the mattresses are unknown it is possible they may not comply even though they may be displaying what appear to be fire safety labels.

“Don’t let scammers con you, be sceptical, take your time, know who you’re dealing with and always protect your personal information. February sees the joint police/trading standards initiative Scamnesty which looks to raise awareness of scams and encourages the public to report such frauds.”

Lancashire Constabulary’s DC Tony McClements of the Economic Crime Unit added, “In the current economic climate many people will be tempted by the offer of cheap mattresses. Unfortunately there is no guarantee that the mattresses for sale will meet with the appropriate safety standards, therefore as our colleagues at Trading Standards have explained there is an inherent safety risk.

“Also worrying is the fact that marketers of this type really shouldn’t be plying their business on the playgrounds of schools. Although we appreciate that schools offer an opportunity at opening and close to gain access to a large number of potential customers, we work hard with schools and parents to ensure that children enjoy a safe environment at their place of study.

“Un-chaperoned salesman wandering around the playground is not conducive to maintaining this safe environment; therefore I would ask the individuals concerned to refrain. The individuals concerned are probably only intent on selling their wares, however not only will their actions draw undue attention to themselves; but sadly there are individuals out there who may seek to utilise this marketing development for an ulterior motive. Lancashire Constabulary will therefore take any appropriate action to maintain the safety of the school environment.”

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