Disaster strikes when woman falls asleep on the floor near her robot vacuum

woman rescued by the fire department after robot vacuum attack
yakiniku/Shutterstock
Do you own a robot vacuum and have longish hair? Then please, please don’t pass out drunk on the floor after singing “Kiss from a Rose” to your cat.

Evidently the little suckers are just waiting until we’re at their level to try and sweep us up like so much rubbish. One woman and South Korea found this out after she fell asleep on the floor, and her vacuum came after her. Or at the very least, it became hopelessly entangled in her hair as it went about its preprogrammed cleaning routine.

Many robot vacuums can be scheduled to perform their tasks at specified intervals, whether at night or while you’re at work. It detaches itself from its charging station and goes about its business. This story might make you think twice about setting it to start vacuuming at 3:00 a.m.

The fire department arrived at the 52-year-old woman’s home after a “desperate rescue request,” according to South Korea paper Kyunghyang Shinmun. Considering people are calling 911 when Facebook is down, this seems like a pretty valid complaint. They were able to free the woman from her ravenous device before any serious damage occurred.

The offending vac was not a Roomba. “The robotic vacuum cleaner featured in this photo and story is not an iRobot product. The safety of our customers is paramount for iRobot, and all of the company’s products undergo strict development processes and testing before going to market. This includes safety mechanisms in Roomba that deactivate its cleaning system when it is not placed on the ground,” said an iRobot spokesperson in a statement.

We’ll just be sure to keep a 10-foot radius from our robot vacs in the future.

Update 2/08/2015: This story was updated to include iRobot’s statement. 

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