Temple Fire and Rescue personnel credit a smoke alarm with saving a Temple family by alerting them that a fire had started in the laundry area of their home as they slept.
It also kept damage to the house at a minimum.
Fire crews were dispatched to a home in the 3300 block of Elm Drive at 12:57 a.m. Thursday.
First firefighters on the scene spotted light smoke coming from the home with two residents outside in the front yard.
Fire crews were directed to a utility closet where the homeowner hadd used a portable fire extinguisher.
Hot spots were put out with the use of only a small amount of water, with fire damage limited to the contents of the closet, a clothes dryer and an adjoining wall leading into a living room.
Exhaust fans were then used to remove smoke from the house.
Dollars loss to the home and contents were estimated to be under $3000 with the cause being determined to have been unintentional, having started from an electrical failure in the clothes dryer.
There were no injuries.
The homeowner told firefighters he had placed a load of laundry in the dryer and started it before going to bed.
The smoke alarm alerted both people just as the fire started, allowing them to get out safely.
He was able to use the portable fire extinguisher to prevent the blaze from spreading.
Firefighters urge homeowners to install smoke alarms and make sure batteries in them are fresh, testing them at least once a month by pushing the ” test” button.
They also advise cleaning the lint filter in the dryer before each load and making sure the exhaust vent pipe is not restricted, cleaning the pipe of accumulated lint at least once a year.
They also advise to be careful not to over fill the dryer and turn it off when leaving home or going to bed.