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Dryers, fireplaces can destroy homes
CFA warns the community to be mindful when using winter appliances, after a series of preventable house fires over the past few weeks.
Two house fires this week were caused by clothes dryers – one in Werribee late yesterday (14 July) and another in Grovedale early Wednesday morning (13 July).
Logs rolling out of open fireplaces caused serious damage to a home in Tootgarook near Mornington on 5 July and destroyed a home in Trafalgar on 26 June.
CFA State Duty Officer Peter Lucas assured there were simple steps residents could take to protect their homes in the cooler months.
Mr Lucas recommends cleaning the lint filter of clothes dryers after every use.
“It’s harder to dry clothes on the clothes line so dryers are used more frequently this time of year,” he said.
“The more you use it, the more lint builds up, so it’s important to get into the habit of cleaning the filter to reduce the risk of this material catching on fire,” he said.
While all types of heating present fire risk, Mr Lucas warned open fireplaces in particular needed to be monitored with caution.
“We all like to keep comfortably warm at home in winter and an open fire place can create a nice ambiance,” he said.
“But these heating appliances present specific safety risks, which need to be addressed. Make sure you have a guard in front of an open fire and get your flue and chimney cleaned every year.
“Be mindful of the fuel you’re using as well. Both of these recent incidents have involved logs rolling out of fire places without guards in place, which demonstrates just how easily disasters can happen when you’re not paying attention and you haven’t implemented vital safety measures.”