A WOMAN has warned of the importance of smoke alarms after her dishwasher caught fire while her family was asleep.
Tracy Spasic contacted the Advertiser after her dishwasher caught fire at her farmhouse near Blithfield Reservoir on Friday, April 12. The family was alerted to the fire by the smoke alarms and firefighters from Rugeley and Abbots Bromley attended an incident.
Wearing breathing apparatus, they tackled the fire using one hose reel jet and then ventilated the property. The fire service said fortunately the owners were at home when the fire started and were able to alert the fire service.
Mrs Spasic said: “On Friday morning I was alerted to a dishwasher fire of the kitchen of our farmhouse. We are lambing so my mum had not long gone to bed and I was slowly waking myself up prior to my alarm, however I was alerted by the smoke alarm to get up with a jolt and immediately smelt the smoke when I got out of the bedroom.
“I ran downstairs to see smoke everywhere and flames coming out of the dishwasher. We were all able to get out safely but are aware if not for the smoke alarm, things could have been so different.
“The alarm was fitted for free by the Abbots Bromley fire team and quite possibly saved our lives. So many people we have spoken to are surprised by the appliance catching fire and routinely put them on before going to bed or going out, as did we prior to this. You hear of these things but after our experience it brings it all very much into your mind and everybody should be encouraged to check their smoke alarms have working batteries or have them installed.”
Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service has now issued a warning of the dangers of leaving dishwashers switched on and unattended following a spate of fires across the county.
Risk reduction manager Glynn Luznyj said: “We advise people to ensure they remain in the home when dishwashers or other electrical appliances are switched on. We also recommend that people do not put such appliances on before they go to bed as if a fire happens during the night it may go undetected and could result in very serious consequences.
“We are also aware that BOSCH have recalled a number of their dishwasher models, following a potential overheating issue in the control panel. This has resulted in a number of serious fires in domestic properties.”
Other dishwasher fires have included one in Meir on April 11 and another in Perton on March 31 where two men were treated for smoke inhalation.
BOSCH Home Appliances Limited has announced an in-home repair programme of certain dishwashers manufactured between 1999 and early 2005, for models purchased and used in the UK. The affected dishwashers are in the batch number range from FD7901 to FD8504. The service is encouraging people to check if electrical appliances are subject to recalls at the Electrical Safety Council website at www.esc.org.uk/public/guides-and-advice/product-recalls/