Firefighters issue safety warning after three tumble dryer fires

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

Between January 18 and 19 firefighters from across the county attended three separate house fires involving tumble dryers.

A crew from Chesterfield responded to a report of a house fire on Roecar Close, Chesterfield, at 3.52pm, on January 18, but the occupant had extinguished the fire prior to the crew’s arrival.

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Firefighters from Melbourne, Nottingham Road and Ascot Drive were also called out at 8:54pm, on January 18, to a house fire on Twyford Road, Barrow on Trent, which caused extensive damage to a utility room.

Also, at 10:25am, on January 19, firefighters from Dronfield and South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service’s Lowedges station attended a house fire on Holbein Close, Dronfield.

All Three homes had working smoke alarms.

The fire service has stressed that being aware of the risks associated with using electrical appliances can help keep you and your family safe from fire.

Derbyshire Fire & Rescue Service has therefore like provided the following safety advice and information relating to tumble dryers:

Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions;

Don not use tumble dryers at night or while unattended;

Do not overload plug sockets;

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Remove the lint from the trap after every load of clothes dried;

Do not cover the vent or any other opening;

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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.

Derbyshire Fire & Rescue Service has also provided the following safety advice and information relating to electrical items:

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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;

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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;

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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 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.

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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.

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“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 fire service also advocates the need for a pre-planned and practiced escape route that every occupant is aware of.

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