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Thursday, July 16, 2009

I Nearly Burnt The House Down !

Yesterday's headlines on a 22-yr old guy burnt to death in his own home was really shocking. News also mentioned that the deep fryer could be the cause.

I had a near miss last Sunday, thinking back and how it could have been worst made me realise I should not take things for granted, esp appliances with heating element.

It all started with some leftover banana chips (kerepek pisang). My maid didn't want it and I, not wanting to waste food (and also wai-sek) thought of reviving the dead and limp chips. I placed them on my toaster oven, set the temparature to medium and set the timer to 5 minutes (big big mistake ! I always have a bad habit of setting a longer time and then check on the toast manually).

And so the chips were toasting.

And I was packing up apple crumble I baked for my dear father.

Then I heard a 'BOAP'

hmmm.. strange.. I didn't drop anything.. I continued packing the apple crumble

'BOAP' again ???

turned around and I saw my toaster all black and slight flames inside.

SEI FOR LOR !!!!!!!!!!! What to do ? Instant reaction was to get water (worst choice, would have fuelled the fire more) but I could not find a pail

the drinking cups were too small ..
the kitchen towel was too small ..
how ?

I open the toaster (BIG BIG MISTAKE !!!)..and ... FIRE !!! My toaster was on FIRE !!! Opening the door caused more oxygen to go in the toaster and fuel the fire. Sei for lor !! I quickly slammed in shut and turned everything off. The switch was behind the toaster and I risked my hands getting burnt to turn it off. I cannot imagine if I did not. A short circuit could have damaged and burnt down my kitchen or worst, the whole house !

I stood there panicked, luckily the fire stopped. With no oxygen, no fuel and heating element off, the fire gradually died. I quickly open all windows in the house and turned on all fans. I took a couple of hours to rid the house of 'burnt' smell.

Some pics to remind myself to be more diligent when dealing with cooking appliances :

The burnt toaster :

The charcoal chips. All because I was 'wai sek'. I should have just dumped them away. My maid was sniggering (and boy I was soooo annoyed with her !) at my mistake.

I spent and hour cleaning up the toaster with Cosway's Cream Cleanser. I dismantled the screws, glass panel and whatever I could which I think I could reassemble back. Cleaned each piece by piece and kept reminding myself that situation could turn worst, the kitchen could have caught fire and I could have put my family in danger.
What to do now ? I NEED A FIRE EXTINGUISHER !!!!