Fire officials warn: Clean dryer's lint trap, vents to avoid fire

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The Clearwater Fire Department is urging people to clean lint from their dryers regularly in order to avoid a potentially deadly or destructive experience.

According to fire officials, lint can act as kindling and spark flames within seconds, like it did inside a mobile home on Osaka Drive, Wednesday night.

The resident made it out safely, but the home is a total loss.

"I have probably been to, I would definitely tell you, 20 to 30 dryer fires, and many of those fires were preventable," said Larry Williams, assistant chief at the Clearwater Fire and Rescue Department.

Williams said people should scrape lint off the dryer screen after every load and the dryer vent should be cleaned at least every three months.

"If you don't clean it every three months, then our other recommendation is once a year, those vents should be cleaned," Williams said.

Residents of the Japanese Gardens Mobile Home Park said their neighbor's unfortunate situation is a wake-up call.

"I'm very upset because I went home and cleaned my own dryer out," said Dorothy Ravener.

Firefighters also put out a dryer fire in Seminole this week.

According to fire investigators, the dryer was removed from the garage and the fire was put out before it caused any further damage.

No one was hurt in that incident.