According to the United States Fire Administration, 2,900 home clothes dryer fires are reported each year and cause an estimated five deaths, 100 injuries, and $35,000,000 in property loss. Failure to clean the dryer is the leading cause – more than one out of every three – of home clothes dryer fires.
At the April 5th Mayor & Council meeting, First Ward Councilwoman Jayme Negron asked about a recent home fire which she hard started due to dryer lint. She brought up her concerns during the Roselle Park Fire Department (RPFD) monthly report at the municipal meeting. Although nothing has been determined yet as to the cause of the most recent house fire in the borough and that was stated by Fire Chief Joseph Signorello Jr., it did start a conversation about dryer safety.
“You always hear change the batteries in your smoke detectors and that’s a very common thing that people are reminded about,” stated Councilwoman Negron, “but you should be cleaning out your dryer vents regularly as well, right?”
“They’re one of the biggest causes of fires in the United States,” said Fire Chief Signorello.
Fourth Ward Councilman Michael Connelly, who works for an appliance store, added to the conversation, “With dryers, they have three thermal fuses in there. If they feel that there’s no ventilation going out, it’ll shut off.”
“Some of the new ones are modern,” stated Fire Chief Signorello.
Councilwoman Negron asked, “How often should you check your dryer?”
Fire Chief Signorello explained, “You should change that lint every time you do [a load] but that [hose] I try to do it yearly. It’s caked up. It’s solid.”
The fire chief added that anyone interested in having the RPFD do a building familiarization check can call the borough clerk’s office. Chief Signorello stated, “We’ll come by there and help them out.”
The borough clerk’s office can be reached by calling (908) 245-6222.
Additionally, below is a flier on clothes dryer fire safety:
Download Clothes Dryer Fire Safety Flier