Microwave fire...again

One year after a major Whirlpool microwave recall, an Arkansas family experiences a microwave fire.

JEFFERSON (KATV) - Thirty-four years after a microwave fire killed her grandfather, a Jefferson County woman says tragedy nearly struck again.

The experience has left this family fearful that your family could be next.

It was late August last year when Whirlpool recalled over 15,000 microwave ovens because of fire concerns.

Last month, the Batson family went to Lowe's and bought a Whirlpool microwave oven not involved in that recall as they worked to furnish and remodel their new home.

"He came in and he said that there was blue flames coming out and the door was glued shut," recalls Crystal Batson of the day her husband walked in and discovered a fire in their kitchen.

Batson and her family bought their home out of foreclosure. There had been no water service for a decade. It took 13 years to evict the former tenant and cleaning up the mess she left behind was a major project.

Now, they have a new major mess created by a newly installed microwave.

"We weren't doing anything,” recalls Batson. β€œIt was not in use. My husband was the only one home at the time. I was in town."

Thankfully, the fire was quickly discovered and quickly extinguished.

Over three decades ago, when Crystal was eight-years-old, her grandfather died in a fire caused by a microwave.

The thought of her eight-year-old son losing a loved one in a similar way is overwhelming.

And maddening.

"I know that we make safety efforts,” says Batson. β€œI know that lots of things have happened. But for the same family to have microwaves catch fire, that tells me there is something going on in the industry that we're not looking out and taking care of safety and putting that as a priority."

Previous fires occurred when microwaves were in use. The cause of this fire remains under investigation.

Crystal is hopeful that Whirlpool will pay to replace her microwave, her damaged cabinets and other repairs she needs to make as a result of smoke damage.

Air date: September 12th, 2017

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