Fire department says company misusing its name to get advertising business

BROOMFIELD, Colo. -- North Metro Fire District said a business is using its name without permission to entice companies into purchasing advertising space on their magnets.

North Metro Fire spokeswoman Sara Farris said a business called the fire department after it was approached by Fire Safety Magnets asking if the business wanted to buy advertising space on a magnet it was producing in conjunction with North Metro Fire District.

Farris said North Metro Fire knew nothing of the magnets and never agreed to a partnership with the company.

"That was a concern for us when we had one person call. It made us question how many other people had been approached," Farris said.

"And so we wanted to do our job to get the word out to our local businesses and residents, 'Don't be mislead. This is not a product from us.'"

Farris said the company has pulled the same maneuver on other fire departments in the metro area.

In 2016, a ballet company contacted the Colorado Springs Fire Department after Fire Safety Magnets approached the company to buy advertising spaces.

The Colorado Springs Fire Department issued an alert to the community that it had not partnered with the company

"We are someone that's trusted out in the community so we don't like to see people use our city service as an endorsement," Colorado Springs Fire Department Capt. Steve Wilch said.

While the company has an "A" rating with the Better Business Bureau, complaints on the site said the company misled businesses into believing Fire Safety Magnets was working together with fire departments.

All complaints leveled against the company on the Better Business Bureau were resolved.

The company only responded to the FOX31 Problem Solvers' request for an interview on Facebook.

In messages, the company said North Metro Fire entered into an open-ended contract with the company that never expires after the fire department received several fire safety whiteboards from the company 10 years ago.

While the North Metro Fire District said it never approved of the magnets, the company continues to use its name to sell them.

Farris said if companies approach you and say they are working together with or are endorsed by the local fire department, never hesitate to call the fire department to verify.