Comcast isn’t exactly known for its customer service, and the difficulty of closing down an account with the telecom giant is well-documented. But this latest incident involving a man whose home had just burned to the ground takes bad customer service to a ridiculous extreme.

According to The Pioneer Press, a Comcast employee refused to cancel the service of St. Paul resident Jimmy Ware despite the fact that his home had been destroyed by a fire.

Jessica Schmidt, the daughter of the 66-year-old retired trucker, was told she needed her father’s account number in order to cancel service. This wasn’t possible, since all of his documents had burned in the fire. But despite the circumstances, the employee refused to accept the last four digits of Ware’s Social Security number as proof of his identity.

I’ve said to Comcast, ‘Here’s your choice, disconnect the service or send someone out to fix the cable, because it’s not working,’ “ Schmidt said. "The (Comcast) guy said, 'That doesn’t make sense, because the house burned down.’ I said, 'Exactly, shut the service off.’ ”

The absurdity of it all was lost on Comcast, and Schmidt was forced to call back multiple times. Almost a week after the fire, the company’s corporate office caught wind of a potential PR nightmare and finally contacted Schmidt. They cancelled the service and waived all charges accrued since the fire. They also waived all fees associated with returning equipment.

Comcast spokeswoman Mary Beth Schubert said in a statement Tuesday: “We understand that this is a difficult time for Mr. Ware and apologize for the inconvenience. Comcast has safeguards in place to protect the privacy of our customers, including not allowing unauthorized users to make changes to a customer’s account.

In all fairness to Comcast, other families in the area who were affected by the same fire reported no issues with cancelling their service. Fire victim Lawrence-Windholz went as far as to describe her Comcast cancellation experience as “wonderful.” And when a company has over 100,000 employees, mistakes are bound to happen.

On the other hand, it’s Comcast. Screw them.

(H/T: The Consumerist)