Dryer explodes at apartment complex, 2 injured
TAMARAC, Fla. (WSVN) -- Two tenants said they are lucky to be alive after a dryer suddenly exploded at a South Florida apartment complex.
The explosion happened just before 11 p.m. Thursday at the Vizcaya Villas laundry facility along South Nob Hill Circle and Northwest 100th Avenue. "He put the coins in and locked the dryer, and he pushed start. We walked out, and we heard, 'Boom,'" said Anthony Middleton.
Middleton, 17, and his cousin Jamal James, 20, noticed the smell of gas when they walked out of the laundry room. The explosion blew the laundry room door off its hinges. James said he is blessed to be alive. "I just want to thank God that I'm here," he said, "or else I could have gone."
Broward Sheriff's Office deputies and Tamarac Fire Rescue responded to the explosion. "At this point, the inspector will do a thorough investigation, and we'll go from there," said Eric Viveros of Tamarac Fire Rescue.
Rescue crews transported both cousins to University Hospital where they were treated for their injuries and released. James suffered burns to his legs and neck while Middleton was treated for burns to his back. "I still feel the burn," said James.
Residents are upset because the explosion could have been prevented. An in-law of one of the victims said she had warned a manager about the smell of gas prior to this incident. "Whoever was in the office, the maintenance people, I told them, 'I smell gas,'" said Samantha Samuels. "I don't know. I don't want to be blown up."
Another resident said her daughter did laundry earlier in the day. "My daughter was doing laundry in that laundry room," she said.
Viveros said gas dryers could be potentially dangerous. "They can be if they are not properly maintained," he said.
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