Bitumen bandits are hitting the area of Fairy Bower according to the OTF. Photo Crystal Spencer
Bitumen bandits are hitting the area of Fairy Bower according to the OTF. Photo Crystal Spencer

DONT BE FOOLED: Dodgy bitumen bandits are targeting CQ

BITUMEN bandits are on the loose in Central Queensland, according to the Office of Fair Trading.

A warning has been issued after reports of an itinerant trader in the suburb of Fairy Bower, Rockhampton, offering bitumen-laying services at an allegedly reduced cost.

Fair Trading warns itinerant bitumen layers often leave consumers out of pocket.

They vary their approaches and mix and match their sales pitches depending on what they think will work with the consumers they are preying upon.

They will often claim they have bitumen left over from another job and so they can offer it at a 'cheap price today only', according to Fair Trading .

Sometimes watered-down bitumen is laid on ungraded or poorly graded ground and consumers find themselves out of pocket twice as they later must pay another tradie to remove and replace it.

On other occasions the layers initially quote a low cost then a much higher payment is demanded during the work for it to be completed.

Fair Trading said consumers sometimes complied because if the work was not finished, they could not get their car out of the garage.

Sometimes the scammers simply took large deposits, performed no work, and never returned. Consumers had no way to get a refund as these types of traders usually vanished.

Consumers are reminded door-to-door traders must generally not accept payment or commence work on a property within a 10 business day cooling-off period, and consumers can cancel any agreement within this period without penalty.

If you think you have seen these traders, contact the Office of Fair Trading on 13 QGOV (13 74 68) so we can track their movements and warn other consumers.



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