Seattle City Light is warning its customers to be on the lookout for con artists who say they are tree trimmers for the utility.
The utility received two reports recently of con artists using the ruse as a means to get into a customer’s house and steal valuables. In both instances, the scammers were driving an unmarked pickup truck. In one case, some of the con artists took the property owner into the back yard to point out trees they fraudulently claimed needed trimming while the others entered the home. In the other instance, the customer questioned the men and then called Seattle City Light.
All tree trimming for Seattle City Light is conducted by crews from City Light or one of its three contractors, Asplundh, Kemp West and JTS. Workers and notifiers carry identification badges and work from vehicles marked with the company’s name.
“Protect yourself from this scam,” Superintendent Jorge Carrasco said. “If anyone comes to your door to discuss tree trimming, ask for identification and check the vehicle they are driving. If they don’t have proper identification, do not let them in. Call the police instead.”
Anyone who wants to confirm whether a tree trimming crew is legitimate can call (206) 386-1733. Representatives are available Mondays through Fridays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Seattle City Light is the 10th largest public electric utility in theUnited States. It has some of the lowest cost customer rates of any urban utility, providing reliable, renewable and environmentally responsible power to nearly 1 millionSeattlearea residents. City Light has been greenhouse gas neutral since 2005, the first electric utility in the nation to achieve that distinction.