Lents dryer fire quickly snuffed

See why a simple mistake could have caused this Lents neighborhood house to burn to the ground …

An overheated and smoking clothes dryer brings firefighters to this outer East Portland residence.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton

When the house at 6718 SE 86th Avenue started to fill with smoke Monday evening, January 30, its residents took two appropriate actions: They called 9-1-1, and they got out of the house. The cause: Apparently, a clogged lint trap.

After receiving the call, Portland Fire & Rescue (PF&R) the Engine crew of Lents Station 11 rolled out at 5:41 p.m., followed by Woodstock Station’s Truck 25.

After doing their initial “size-up” of the situation, the first crew’s lieutenant at the scene radioed he believed that the smoke was coming from the clothes dryer in the house.

After pulling the smoking dryer out into the back yard, firefighters head out the front door to get heat detecting instruments to make sure there wasn’t actually a fire.

After disconnecting the smoking dryer, fire crews removed it from the house to let it cool down. Pulling water lines was deemed unnecessary. The overheated dryer didn’t catch anything on fire in the laundry room.

Owner Anthony Manuel had words of praise for the Bureau, saying, “Our firefighters are awesome; their response time was incredibly fast, they came quickly and saved our house.”

With the situation over, firefighters talk over the incident among themselves.

Other than a lingering smell of smoke in the residence, the whole thing was over.

“It’s very important for people clean out the ‘lint trap’ on their dryer every time they use it,” a firefighter remarked as he helped pack up gear. “And, it’s a good idea to stay home while a dryer is running, just in case something like this happens.”

© 2017 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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