Authorities warn of overheating dangers after washing machine fire in Milton Keynes

Bucks Fire and Rescue service have issued a warning over electrical appliances after extinguishing a flaming washing machine yesterday.

Wednesday, 12th May 2021, 12:35 pm
Updated Wednesday, 12th May 2021, 12:36 pm

A washing machine caught fire in a Milton Keynes home yesterday morning (May 11).

The machine's plug had overheated in a home on Pebody Place in Olney, it was connected to an extension lead.

Firefighters removed the washing machine from the house and offered advice on how to avoid a repeat situation.

Milton Keynes firefighters attended to a burning washing machine on May 11

A spokesperson for the Bucks Fire and Rescue Service has repeated that advice saying: "The more wall sockets you have in your home, the less you will need an extension cable or adapter. However, many portable electrical items such as lamps and radios are supplied with relatively short cables. Sometimes it is unavoidable not to have to use one, but beware of the following dangers:

- "Damaged cable, due to leads being walked over, continually bent at the same point or stored badly.

- "You can trip or fall over taut, over-stretched cable.

- "Leads on power tools frequently become tangled, leading to one of the conductors eventually failing – this could cause danger.

- "Overuse of multi-way adapters or adapter blocks, which increases the risk of fire."

Here is what the fire service advises when it is impossible to avoid using an extension lead:

- "Only use an extension lead which was bought ready-assembled.

- "We recommend that no extension lead be more than 15 metres long.

- "Only use extension leads fitted with suitably insulated connectors and plugs.- Never join two lengths of flexible cable by twisting the bare ends of wires together.

- "Position an extension lead carefully to prevent any risk of damage.

- "If the cable has to cross a pathway, cover it with a rubber protector strip.

- "Always check that leads, plugs and sockets are undamaged.

- "Always check that the extension lead plug contains the correctly rated fuse for the equipment being used.

- "If using a cable drum extension lead, it should be completely unwound to avoid overheating.

- "For general use, two-core extension leads should not be used."