Friday, July 10, 2009

Skywatch Friday - Fire on 17th Street

A fire started in a dryer downstairs, then travelled up through the walls into the attic. Everyone is OK and the home is still habitable, thanks to the LAFD. The Los Angeles Fire Department is a full-spectrum life safety agency™ protecting more than 4 million people who live, work and play in America's second largest City. The LAFD's 3,586 uniformed personnel protect life, property and the environment through their direct involvement in fire prevention, firefighting, emergency medical care, technical rescue, hazardous materials mitigation, disaster response, public education and community service. (from

Fires can occur when lint builds up in the dryer or in the exhaust duct. Lint can block the flow of air, cause excessive heat build-up, and result in a fire in some dryers. 

To help prevent fires:

Clean the lint screen/filter before or after drying each load of clothes. If clothing is still damp at the end of a typical drying cycle or drying requires longer times than normal, this may be a sign that the lint screen or the exhaust duct is blocked.

Clean the dryer vent and exhaust duct periodically. Check the outside dryer vent while the dryer is operating to make sure exhaust air is escaping. If it is not, the vent or the exhaust duct may be blocked. To remove a blockage in the exhaust path, it may be necessary to disconnect the exhaust duct from the dryer. Remember to reconnect the ducting to the dryer and outside vent before using the dryer again.

Clean behind the dryer, where lint can build up. Have a qualified service person clean the interior of the dryer chassis periodically to minimize the amount of lint accumulation. Keep the area around the dryer clean and free of clutter.

Replace plastic or foil, accordion-type ducting material with rigid or corrugated semi-rigid metal duct. Most manufacturers specify the use of a rigid or corrugated semi-rigid metal duct, which provides maximum airflow. The flexible plastic or foil type duct can more easily trap lint and is more susceptible to kinks or crushing, which can greatly reduce the airflow.

Take special care when drying clothes that have been soiled with volatile chemicals such as gasoline, cooking oils, cleaning agents, or finishing oils and stains. If possible, wash the clothing more than once to minimize the amount of volatile chemicals on the clothes and, preferably, hang the clothes to dry. If using a dryer, use the lowest heat setting and a drying cycle that has a cool-down period at the end of the cycle. To prevent clothes from igniting after drying, do not leave the dried clothes in the dryer or piled in a laundry basket. (from Consumer Product Safety Commission)

Visit clearer skies here.


  1. Glad everyone was ok. Neat photo.

  2. Wow, you really caught a dramatic sky view of this fire. Plus, a reminder to be aware of the fire danger that could be lingering in our own homes. Thanks. Mumzie

  3. Gosh, what en eventful skywatch!!!
    My Skywatch

  4. Powerful photographs. The one thing I dread the most is fire...we have lots of forest fires here in central Florida and they often spread to subdivisions built too closely to the trees.

    Not good!

  5. really caught this as it was fully happening! Glad the FD was able to put it out so quickly and thereby minimize the damage. Thanks for the fire safety tips...

  6. We need firemen like yours over here. We have just had a tragic fire in a housing estate. Several people died. the firemen were withdrawn from the building for 'health and safety reasons' not long afer telling people to lock themseoves in their apartments.

  7. thanks for the informative skywatch and the important reminders too.

  8. Amazing capture, LL. This looks close to your house! However, no fear with LAFD's finest on the job!

    Yesterday's post was especially poignant. Thanks for reminding us of some warriors and heroes among us.


So nice to hear from you!

Warm regards,
Lori Lynn