Concern after washing machine explosion

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A Northampton mother suffered a massive shock when her washing machine exploded with a loud bang in her kitchen.

Anne-Marie Lake, aged 43, of Hardingstone, was washing clothes in her Hotpoint machine last Thursday evening, when the explosion happened.

Mrs Lake, who lives with her husband, Malcolm, and their eight-year-old daughter, Kelly-Marie, said she was in another room when she heard a loud bang from the kitchen.

She said: “It sounded like a massive explosion. It was like a bomb going off.

“My mum was stood next to the washing machine at the time, but luckily she wasn’t hurt.”

Mrs Lake said the explosion broke the seal on the drum of the washing machine and cracked its casing.

She said debris from the explosion flew around her kitchen and broke crockery on a worktop.

She said: “It was so dangerous. The explosion reached the worktops and broke cups, my breadbin and plates.

“At first we didn’t know what had happened because all the lights went off aswell.

“It was only when we got the power supply back on that we saw it was the washing machine.”

Mrs Lake, who said her clothes were also damaged in the washing machine, added: “I dread to think what could have happened if my daughter had been in there or if this happened to a family with a young child.

“It was really scary. I was petrified.”

A spokeswoman for Indesit, which manufactures and supplies Hotpoint washing machines, said: “We are sorry to hear that Mrs Lake has experienced an issue with her machine and our customer service team is currently working with her to resolve the matter.

“We take all customer inquiries seriously and deal with each on a case-by-case basis.

“Mrs Lake’s machine is currently being examined by our engineers and for that reason we are unable to comment any further at this point in time.”

The incident at Mrs Lake’s home is not the first explosion to be reported involving a Hotpoint washing machine.

BBC One’s Watchdog programme publicised a report at the end of last year involving a number of washing machines, maufactured by Indesit, which had exploded.

The report said that when Watchdog received a complaint from an Indesit washing machine owner about an explosion, they assumed it was a one-off incident, until the number of complaints started rising.

The Watchdog report detailed incidents when explosions caused the top of the machine to be raised, the front dials to be pushed out of the machine, the door to be blown open, the drum had come loose and things shaking on the kitchen cabinet.

Other incidents saw the dials and drawer on the machine shatter and fly across a room due to the force of the explosion and people told how they came home to find debris all over the floor.

Indesit agreed with the analysis, apologised to all of Watchdog’s contributors and paid for replacement machines and damage to their kitchens, but they did not recall the washing machine models.