By Mary O’KEEFE
Law enforcement is warning residents to take caution if someone approaches them as a utility worker and asks to enter their home.
On Oct. 5 a man impersonating a Glendale Water and Power employee knocked on the door of a residence in the 1400 block of E. Wilson Avenue in Glendale. He reportedly told the resident he was there to check on the quality of the water inside the home. The resident asked for the man’s identification, but he said he had left it in his car. The customer allowed the man to enter.
While the man was in the home, he went into the kitchen with the resident and turned on the water faucet stating the recent rain created a water quality issue. He asked the resident to stay in the kitchen and instructed her to turn the water off in five minutes. He told her he would be outside to check on something.
After five minutes the man didn’t return and the resident realized he had left. The customer then discovered several items in the home were missing.
Glendale Water and Power reminds customers that company representatives never go inside a customer’s home to check on water quality. If water quality is an issue, GWP employees will first notify the customer of the visit and will conduct any test outside the home.
GWP employees as well as Crescenta Valley Water District employees are required to have identification badges with them when in the field.
“CVWD employees will not just stop by and ask to enter a [customer’s] home. The [employees] will be in uniform and have identification [on their person],” said Christy Scott, spokeswoman for CVWD.
Lt. Ian Grimes, Glendale police, had some suggestions for residents if someone comes to their door stating they are with a utility company.
“First ask for proper identification. All [utility] employees have identification with them. If [they are unexpected] they should not have access to your home,” he advised.
Residents should call the utility company if they have any concerns.
About three weeks ago, Grimes said, residents called police to report a suspicious person in their yard. The man said he was from the Gas Company but the employee had startled the homeowner by entering the backyard. Police arrived and found that the man was in fact a Gas Company employee.
The gas employee realized the residents were concerned and held up his identification card.
Grimes said residents should not be concerned about calling the utility company if there are any concerns or asking employees for identification.
“Employees understand they have a duty to keep their identification [with them],” he said.