A blast in a refrigerator led to a fire that burnt down the entire flat of a Mulund-based family on Sunday. The family of five managed to escape in the nick of time.

Except for a room, the entire flat was damaged
Except for a room, the entire flat was damaged

Dilip Tambe resides with his wife, Shailaja, and three children Pankaj, Nishigandha and Sayali in a three bedroom flat on the seventh floor of Rajnigandha building, Hira Nagar, Mulund (West).

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The fridge was bought in  2009 and was working fine till Sunday. Pics/Sharad Vegda
The fridge was bought in  2009 and was working fine till Sunday. Pics/Sharad Vegda

Tambe said, “We shifted to this house in 2009. I am retired, my wife is a housewife, while our three children are working with private firms.” Sayali said, “The incident took place on Sunday evening. We were all watching TV after dinner, while my brother was in his bedroom.”

The incident
The incident took place around 9.30 pm. Nishigandha said, “The double-door fridge was kept in our hall. I heard several continuous spark-like sounds coming from the fridge. I got little scared and informed my mom, while dad was in the washroom.

My mom told me to switch off the fridge. I switched it off, but suddenly flames erupted and a small blast occurred.” Sayali said, “I rushed with my mom and banged the door of the washroom for my father to come out immediately.”

Her sister Nishigandha added, “The flames rose from the fridge. My sister and mom were shouting for me to run, and I rushed to them.” Sayali said, “In just a minute, when we were rushing down, we heard two to three blasts in our flat and then a huge fire broke out.

Everyone in the building went down. When we called the fire control, we were shocked by their response. They said, ‘Such fires take place every day, we cannot reach every place. So switch off the mains and pour water’. I explained we could not do anything.

My dad and I had already switched off two main switches and shut the gas line while leaving.”She added, “A few local boys again called the fire brigade and lied saying few people were trapped and injured and the fire was huge. The fire brigade came by 10.30 pm. The Mulund police came by 12. The fire was doused and we entered our flat at 2.30 am.”

Sayali said, “We were shocked to see our flat. Several things had completely burnt down, they had melted in the fire. The walls were completely black.” Tambe said, “I have never seen such a thing in my life. I have heard of blasts and fires in ACs but never in the fridge. We have suffered a huge financial loss.”

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Sayali said, “We will have to go for complete renovation of the flat. We are even thinking of filing a complaint against the fridge company.” The Tambes said there had been no problems in the fridge until the day of the fire. Fire officer Mahajan of Mulund fire station said, “After receiving the call, we reached the spot with two fire brigade engines and several staff.

When we reached the spot, most of the electronic items were badly damaged, while the fridge was in the worst condition. We suspect a blast took place in fridge, however we don’t know the exact reason or cause of the blast.”