Dryer Causes Centreville House Fire

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Units responded to a house fire Friday, September 4, 2015, at approximately 6:20 p.m., in the Centreville area of Fairfax County. The single-family home is located at 15213 Dumas Court.

Firefighters encountered smoke coming from the second floor of the three story home upon arrival. Firefighters conducted an aggressive interior search and found the fire in the second floor laundry room.  Firefighters quickly brought the fire under control. The three residents were alerted by smoke alarms in the home and safely escaped the home prior to the arrival of the fire department.  Red cross assistance was offered and declined by the residents.  There were no injuries.

Damage is estimated at $156,000

According to fire investigators, the fire was accidental. The fire was determined to originate in the clothes dryer.

Clothes Dryer Safety Tips

Clean the lint filter before or after each use. Don’t forget to clean the back of the dryer where lint can be trapped. Remove accumulated lint around the drum.

Have your dryer installed and serviced by a professional.

Do not operate the dryer without a lint filter.

The interior of the dryer and venting system should be cleaned periodically by qualified service personnel. If you notice the drying time is longer, clean the vent system thoroughly to ensure proper airflow.

Replace plastic, vinyl, and aluminum foil venting with rigid or flexible metal venting.

Ensure the air exhaust bent pipe is unrestricted and the outdoor vent flap opens when the dryer operates.

Make sure the right plug and outlet are used and the machine is connected properly.

Do not leave a dryer running if you leave home or when you go to bed.

Do not dry clothing/fabric on or near anything flammable (alcohol, cooking oils, gasoline, spot removers, dry-cleaning solvents, etc.). Flammable substances give off vapors that could ignite or explode.

Keep the dryer area clear of things that can burn, such as boxes or clothing.

Keep dryers in good working order. Gas dryers should be inspected by a professional to ensure the gas line and connection are intact and free of leaks.

Have a functional smoke alarm placed in the laundry area (somewhere near the dryer).

Photo provided by Northern Virginia Fire Buffs