Otaki mother loses baby clothes after fire in recalled washing machine

Last week, a Runanga resident had a lucky escape when their washing machine caught fire. Photo / Greymouth Star
Last week, a Runanga resident had a lucky escape when their washing machine caught fire. Photo / Greymouth Star

A young Otaki mother has lost a load of baby clothes after her washing machine that she did not know had been recalled years ago burst into flames.

Jamie Winiata has thanked firefighters for stopping the blaze from becoming far worse after her faulty Samsung top loader caught fire on Monday.

The Otaki Volunteer Fire Brigade and the shocked mother are urging people to check the model of their washing machines in case they are part of the recall and have not yet had them repaired.

The Fire Service says about 8000 machines in New Zealand homes have not been returned or fixed.

HAVE YOU HAD A PROBLEM WITH THESE WASHING MACHINES?

The Kapiti Coast fire is the second in as many days. A Runanga home was smoke and water damaged and the homeowner taken to hospital with smoke inhalation after a recalled washing machine caught fire on Saturday.

Ms Winiata told Fairfax she had just put a load of her young daughter's clothes through a washing cycle before preparing tea.

By chance she stepped outside and saw thick black smoke pouring from the laundry.

Flames were shooting out of the machine so she grabbed a 30-litre bucket filled with rainwater, ran back through the smoke and emptied it over the washing machine.

She was not aware the appliance had been recalled by maker Samsung three years ago.

The Otaki Volunteer Fire Brigade has praised the Jean Hing Place resident for her prompt action to quell the flames but is concerned the machines are behind a number of house fires.

Read more:
• Warning issued after washing machine fire

Fires in Auckland, Invercargill, Masterton, Runanga, Otorohanga and Pukekohe have been linked to the faulty appliances.

"Tonight the Otaki Volunteer Fire Brigade attended a fire in a laundry caused by one of these machines. Only by the owners doing everything correctly when they found the washing machine on fire, did they manage to keep the damage to a minimum and no one was injured," they posted on Facebook.

"If you own a Samsung model that is on the recall list please get it checked out or replaced."

Ms Winiata said words did not express the gratitude to the actions of firefighters for saving her home.

"A massive, massive thank you to the Otaki Volunteer Fire Brigade for everything you did yesterday. Words cannot express our gratitude to you all," she wrote.

She said people needed to check the model number of the washing machine and get smoke alarms installed.

The recall includes 36,000 washing machines manufactured between 2010-2013 with model numbers SW75V9WIP, SW65V9WIP, SW80SPWIP, SW70SPWIP.

Those machines have a faulty seal where moisture can get into the electrics.

Samsung told Fairfax about 4000 machines that had not been found.

The company had "taken ongoing proactive steps to encourage customers to check their machines".

- NZ Herald

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