Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Clean out your lint traps!

There's no joke here. It's a word of caution that I hope you'll help spread around.
My second cousin and his wife, who live in a house across the road from our cottage, have lost their beautiful home to a fire, caused by a blocked lint trap on their clothes dryer. Luckily, they woke up at 1:00 a.m. (I'm not sure, but probably from a smoke detector) and got out of the burning house with the proverbial clothes on their backs.
At first, it was thought that the house was just gutted, and could be restored. But on the phone tonight, my Dad told me that once they could inspect it, they learned that it has to be torn down and totally replaced.
I've heard of this before, and hope you keep your lint trap cleaned out. It doesn't stop at the screen that traps most of the lint from each load, either. Get in behind it with your vacuum cleaner on a regular basis. It's surprising how much lint gets past the screen. It builds up and eventually catches fire.
One time that I heard of such a thing was at a fire that I covered in Timmins as a videographer. Damage was very minor that time, because it was one o'clock in the afternoon in an urban residential area -- not one o'clock in the morning, in a rural area some ten kilometres from the nearest fire hall. Anyway, the lady in that house neglected her lint trap, and it caught fire, killing her cat. The fire chief told me that when cats sense fire, they hide -- under a bed, in this instance. And because a cat's lungs are so small, it takes very little smoke inhalation to kill it.

So please, check that lint trap regularly, and go deeper than getting the lint out between loads.


Maria said...

Thanks for the tip Booby...

Very sad to loose everything in a fire, especially items that can't be replaced like momentos and pictures.

Very Sad!

Ma Horton said...

In a busy life we often forget things as simple as this can lead to irreversible tragedy . Thanks Bobbycakes for the safety reminder .

Misster Kitty said...

Hope all is well with your Cousin and his Wife. Glad to hear they got out safely.

I checked my lint trap last night... all spikety-span