A mum-of-two has warned others to keep an eye on their tumble dryers after her kitchen was destroyed when her dryer caught fire.
The stark warning comes as fire chiefs also issued a reminder following a surge in devastating tumble dryer fires in Lancaster and Morecambe.
Whirlpool, manufacturer of Creda, Hotpoint, Indesit, Proline and Swan tumble dryers said more than five million of their machines sold between 2004 and September 2015 could be dangerous as they allow lint to build up against the heating element.
During that time, there have been 395 tumble dryer fires in Lancashire, including 28 in Lancaster, 12 in Morecambe and three in Garstang.
Morecambe mum Yasmin Eastwood is now living in temporary accommodation after her kitchen was destroyed and much of her home damaged when her tumble dryer caught fire.
Yasmin, who has two young sons – James, two, and Freddy, one – said the family was lucky to escape the blaze.
The property’s smoke alarm did not work, leaving them with little time to get out once the fire had taken hold.
Four fire engines and an aerial ladder platform from Preston were needed to tackle the blaze at the three storey property in Queen Street.
Yasmin said: “I had put the tumble dryer on and gone to have a bath. The children were in the living room with their dad. I had just got out of the bath when he said he could smell smoke. He opened the kitchen door and saw the tumble dryer was on fire.
“Straight away we got the kids out of the house. About 30 seconds later we heard a bang and it was the tumble dryer blowing up.
“Everything in the kitchen was destroyed, and so was the hallway. The rest of the house was smoke damaged. We have lost everything.
“The fire service were fantastic. I can’t thank them enough; they got there so fast and were absolutely brilliant.”
Yasmin had only owned the Hoover tumble dryer for about six months, and had previously left it running while she was out or in bed.
“I would never leave it now,” she said. “I would say to people to check on it as much as you can.”
John Taylor, of Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service, said:
“We advise people not to use their washing machines or dryers when they go out or go to bed. The temptation is there, but you’re not going to be alert to things like smoke or be able to switch the machine off. These fires can be life-threatening.
“Anything with a heating element is always going to have the potential for fire. Don’t take risks.”