Saturday, October 27, 2001
Unattended clothes dryer starts fire
By Jennifer D. Jordan
SEABROOK, N.H. -- A running clothes dryer left unattended caused $100,000 to $200,000 worth of damage to a home near Seabrook Beach about 8:40 a.m. this morning, according to fire officials.
It's an occurrence that happens about three times a year in Seabrook.
"The clothes were completely charcoaled," said Fire Chief Martin P. Janvrin.
Apparently, the lint screen had not been cleaned in some time, and that sparked a fire that gutted part of the home's first floor.
"It is not safe to leave your clothes in a dryer and then leave the house, and people do it all the time," Janvrin said. "With winter coming and people not hanging their clothes out to dry anymore, we want everyone to know, they need to clean their lint traps and never leave the dryer running when you leave your house."
Bernard J. Tay, whose family has owned 95 Concord St. for 40 years and who has lived in the white, two-story house for 20 years, said he had just left the house less than half an hour before the fire started.
"I was at my son's office when they called and told me about the fire," Tay said as he stood near scorch marks on the side of his house. "We came over right away."
Firefighters from Seabrook, Hampton and Salisbury responded to the fire, which was extinguished by 9:30 a.m. It took almost an hour to put it out because of strong winds, said Janvrin. Hampton Falls ran the Seabrook station during this period.
Firefighters also tore a hole through the roof on the second floor for ventilation, Janvrin said, adding the house cannot be lived in until repairs are made because of extensive smoke and water damage.
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