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Tumble Dryer Safety Warning

20/Jan/2017

Derbyshire Fire & Rescue Service is issuing a safety warning in respect of electrical appliances following three tumble dryer fires within a 24 hour period.

Between 18-19 January 2017 firefighters from across the county have attended three separate house fires involving tumble dryers:

Incidents

1. At 15:52 hours on 18 January 2017 firefighters from Chesterfield and Dronfield attended a house fire on Roecar Close, Chesterfield. The occupant had extinguished the fire prior to the crew’s arrival.

2. At 20:54 hours on 18 January 2017 firefighters from Melbourne, Nottingham Road and Ascot Drive attended a house fire on Twyford Road, Barrow on Trent. The fire caused extensive damage to a utility room.

3. At 10:25 hours on 19 January 2017 firefighters from Dronfield and South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service’s Lowedges attended a house fire on Holbein Close, Dronfield.

All Three homes had working smoke alarms.

Being aware of the risks associated with using electrical appliances can help keep you and your family safe from fire. Derbyshire Fire & Rescue Service would therefore like to remind people of the following safety advice and information relating to tumble dryers and electrical items:

Tumble Dryer Safety

  • Always follow the manufacturer's instructions.
  • Don't use tumble dryers at night or while unattended.
  • Don't overload plug sockets.*
  • Remove the lint from the trap after every load of clothes dried. Do not cover the vent or any other opening.
  • Ensure the vent pipe is free of kinks and is not crushed in any way. Only use recommended vent pipes, and not improvised ones.
  • Only vent the warm air to the outside of a building. Do not put rags or materials into your tumble dryer if they have been used to soak up flammable liquids.

For more information on tumble dryer safety visit http://www.electricalsafetyfirst.org.uk/guides-and-advice/electrical-items/tumble-dryers/ *where you can also access a Socket Calculator to check if you are exceeding the maximum load.

Electrical Safety

  • Always check that you are using the right fuse to prevent overheating.
  • Make sure an electrical appliance has a British or European safety mark when you buy it.
  • Certain appliances, such as washing machines, should have a single plug to themselves, as they are high powered.
  • Try and keep to one plug per socket.
  • Keep your eyes peeled for signs of dangerous or loose wiring such as scorch marks, hot plugs and sockets, fuses that blow or circuit-breakers that trip for no obvious reasons, or flickering lights.
  • Check and replace any old cables and leads, especially if they are hidden from view behind furniture or under carpets and mats.
  • Unplug appliances when you're not using them or when you go to bed.

Appliance owners are advised to register their appliance and follow all the manufacturer’s instructions. Registering your appliances at www.registermyappliance.org.uk means the manufacturer is able to contact you ensuring the household will receive any relevant safety messages. You can also check for any product recalls on this website.

Area Manager Alex Johnson said, “We have responded to three separate fires involving tumble dryers this week, but thankfully, all three properties were fitted with working smoke alarms and nobody sustained any injuries.

“It’s important that everyone takes a moment to familiarise themselves with our electrical safety advice, which can help prevent accidental fires from occurring and help protect families from the devastating consequences of a house fire.”

Derbyshire Fire & Rescue Service would like to remind people of the importance of having working smoke alarms fitted on every level of the home. Only working smoke alarms can give vital early warning of a fire allowing occupants time to get out, stay out and call 999. The Service also advocates the need for a pre-planned and practiced escape route that everybody in the family is aware of.

For more fire safety advice and information visit www.derbys-fire.gov.uk and/or Follow/Like us on Twitter and Facebook.

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