Blow-dryer causes shampoo can to explode, blowing bathroom door off hinges

A blow-dryer left plugged in created enough heat to cause an aerosol can of dry shampoo to explode in a northeast Calgary on Thursday afternoon, fire officials say.

Calgary fire department says hairdryer left plugged in caused nearby aerosol can to blow up

Firefighters were called to the northeast Calgary community of Coral Springs after a hair-dryer left plugged in caused an aerosol can to explode. (David Bell/CBC)

A blow-dryer left plugged in created enough heat to cause an aerosol can of dry shampoo to explode in a northeast Calgary on Thursday afternoon, fire officials say.

A woman phoned 911 about 1 p.m. MT to report hearing an explosion on the second floor of her Coral Springs home.

She went upstairs and found a bathroom door had been blown off the hinges and some towels were on fire, which she put out.

Fire crews arrived and found remnants of a small explosion and fire.

"The fire investigator determined that a hair-dryer which had been plugged in created enough heat to cause an aerosol dry shampoo can sitting nearby to explode with substantial force," said a release.

"The bathroom sustained damage to the door, cabinet and bathtub tiles as a result of the blast. The investigation will now focus on the hairdryer to determine any possible malfunction of the appliance."

The fire department also shared some fire prevention tips, including:

  • Always unplug appliances such as curling irons, flat irons and blow-dryers that aren't in use.
  • When done using appliances that create heat, place them on a hard, non-combustible surface and away from anything that can burn, until they have cooled down.
  • Use extreme caution with aerosol cans as they can cause a dangerous explosion if heated.
  • Always read the manufacturers' instructions and warnings on all household products.
  • Ensure you have working smoke alarms on every level of your home​.

More fire safety information can be found online.


Dave Dormer

Former CBC digital journalist

Dave Dormer worked with CBC Calgary from 2016 to 2019. A graduate of the SAIT photojournalism program, Dave has worked in print and television newsrooms across western Canada.


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