Black Smoke Cloud at Stevens Institute
Many Hoboken residents emailed 411 asking about a fire call at Stevens Institute earlier this week…
Just an oil furnace switchover!
The Hoboken Fire Department received several calls about a plume of black smoke that was lingering around the Stevens Institute Campus, and naturally it didn’t turn out to be a fire. So what was that smoke? I talked to a couple of engineers at Stevens yesterday and they gave me the scoop…
Did you know that the heat and hot water at Stevens can be supplied both by gas and oil? While they primarily use gas most of the year, there are instances (such as when prices change) where they switch over to oil. In this particular circumstance, PSE&G actually contacted Stevens and asked them to switch to oil because of the heavy demand for gas during cold spells such as the one we’re currently experiencing.
Additionally, remember that pump replacement operation from last year?
Well, the engineers told me that they also switched from Number 6 oil (heavy fuel) to Number 2 – and the system required some calibration and adjustment – hence the reason for the clouds of smoke while they tweaked the settings. Read more about fuel oil types here.
All in all – nothing to worry about whatsoever!