I wanted to take a moment to urge you to remind your readers of the importance of having a fire extinguisher in their home, and to NEVER leave the house with an appliance of any sort running.
Earlier this week on my day off, I was on my second load of laundry when, from the kitchen, I heard an odd noise from the laundry room. When I went into the hallway I could see flames under the washing machine! I went directly to the garage steps, where we keep a large fire extinguisher, grabbed the phone on my way back to the laundry closet, and called 911 while emptying the extinguisher under the machine (after unplugging it!).
Grabbing the pets, I went to the garage, turned off the main breaker (important!), tossed the cat and dog in the car and pulled across the road to the neighbors so they would be safe. Thankfully when the fire department arrived there was only a very stinky somewhat smokey house and a big mess of fire extinguisher gunk and spilled laundry soap, no real damage! The motor on my machine had locked up, overheated, and caught fire! We have all been taught to be cautious of our dryers, but I never dreamed of the washer having such a malfunction. I will never leave my washer running while out of the house or sleeping again. I hate to think what could have happened if I had been outdoors or in the shower.
Please, please, please, keep a fire extinguisher in your home at all times, know how to use it, never leave large appliances running, and have your washer and dryer serviced and cleaned regularly.
Feeling VERY blessed,