With the cold creeping in, house fires are at the top of mind. THV11 is verifying a post going viral online, claiming that one of the leading causes of fires is a common appliance -- meaning a fire could happen at any time to anyone.
Take a look at this Facebook post with about 200,000 shares.
It says "Please clean your lint filter after every run. Dryer Fires are the leading cause of house fires."
So is this claim about dryer fires legit?
THV11 went digging for stats from the National Fire Protection association and the Consumer Product Safety Commission.
Between 2010 and 2014, fire departments responded to an average of 16,000 fires every year involving dryers or washing machines.
On average, 13 people die and 440 are injured every year from these fires. Dryer and washer fires were the 6th leading cause of home fires between 2011 and 2015, causing more fires than candles, but less fires than space heaters.
So, yes, they are a leading cause of fires.
But, is it specifically the leftover lint that's the problem?
Well, yes. Twenty-seven percent of all dryer fires were started by lint, and 26 percent were started by clothes themselves.
So we verified - YES - dryer fires caused by lint buildup is a leading cause of house fires. Experts recommend cleaning lint traps after every use and lint vents at least once a year.