[HISTORY: Adopted by the Council of the City of Mount Vernon 5-13-1959 as Ch. 96 of the General Ordinances, approved 5-14-1959. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Boilers and other equipment — See Ch. 98.
It is hereby declared that the unnecessary emission of smoke, soot, cinders, noxious gases, dust or fly ash from buildings using fuel-oil-burning equipment in the City of Mount Vernon is detrimental to the health of the inhabitants of the City and their property, and the same is hereby prohibited. For the purpose of controlling and reducing atmospheric pollution, it is hereby declared to be the policy of the City to establish and maintain active and continuing supervision of combustion processes and of the emission of certain harmful or objectionable elements into the atmosphere. The necessity for legislative intervention by the enactment of the provisions of this chapter is hereby declared as a matter of legislative determination, and this title shall be liberally construed so as to effectuate the above purposes. Nothing herein contained shall be construed to abridge the emergency powers of the Department of Health or the right of the Department of Health to engage in any of its necessary or proper activities, including the enforcement of the Sanitary Code.
As used in this chapter, the following terms are defined as follows:
- The Fire Commissioner of the City of Mount Vernon.
- DENSE SMOKE
- Smoke of a density to or in excess of No. 3 of the Ringelmann Smoke Chart or the Microringelmann Smoke Chart.
- Air- or gasborne solid particles, including fly ash and soot.
- FLY ASH
- Solid particles resulting from combustion or incomplete combustion of coal, wood or other fuels.
- Combustible materials, solid, liquid or gaseous, used primarily either to kindle or sustain fire or produce heat.
- FUEL-OIL-BURNING EQUIPMENT
- Any furnace, boiler, water heater, oven stove, kiln or other apparatus using fuel oil.
- MICRORINGELMANN CHART
- A chart on file in the office of the Department of Health and the Fire Department of the City of Mount Vernon, prepared from the Ringelmann Chart of the United States Bureau of Mines.
- Solid particles emitted from a chimney, stack, flue or open fire as a result of the combustion of fuel or refuse.
- Agglomerated particles consisting essentially of carbonaceous material.
- A smokestack, chimney, flue, duct or other conveyor for carrying products of combustion or incomplete combustion, smoke, dusts or odors into the open air.
- An accepted technical procedure for determining the amount of solids, smoke, dust or fly ash in the stack gases or atmosphere.
No person shall cause, suffer or allow to be emitted into the open air from any building using fuel-oil-burning equipment, smoke the shade or appearance of which is equal to or darker than No. 2 of the Microringelmann Chart, except:
Smoke, the shade or appearance of which is equal to but not darker than No. 3 of the Microringelmann Chart for more than four continuous minutes when building a new fire or when breakdown of equipment occurs such as to make it evident that the emission was not reasonably preventable.
Smoke, the shade or appearance of which is equal to but not darker than No. 2 of the Microringelmann Chart for a period or periods aggregating two minutes in any hour.
When the Commissioner shall declare a nuisance to exist, it shall be deemed to have been created, and it may be summarily ordered to be abated by the Commissioner or his duly authorized representative.
After any owner, agent, occupant, manager or lessee in charge of any premises has been previously notified of a violation of this chapter in respect to the emission of dense smoke, soot, cinders or noxious gases caused by fuel-oil-burning equipment, the owner, agent, occupant, manager or lessee in charge of said premises shall be notified to show cause before the Commissioner on a day certain, not less than 10 days from the date of notice, why the equipment causing such violations should not be sealed. The notice herein provided for may be given by mail directed to the last known address of the party to be notified, or if said party or his whereabouts is unknown, then by posting a notice on or near the premises at which the violations have occurred. Upon said date, the violator may appear and be heard. Upon such hearing, if the authorized official finds that adequate corrective means and methods have not been employed to correct the cause of such condition, then it shall be his duty to seal said equipment until such time of correction.
The Commissioner or any person delegated by him may make general and specific investigations on behalf of the City and may determine when a violation of this chapter exists. If as a result of any inspection, including the first, the Commissioner or his duly authorized representative deems an emergency situation to exist, a violation of this chapter may be declared and the fuel-oil-burning equipment may be sealed forthwith.
It shall be unlawful for any person to break a seal of any fuel-oil-burning equipment that has been duly sealed by an authorized official, unless permitted by the authorized official in writing.
No person shall hinder, obstruct, delay, resist, prevent or in any way interfere with the Commissioner or any individuals to whom his authority has been duly delegated in the performance of any duty herein enjoined or refuse to permit such personnel to perform their duty by refusing them or any of them entrance at reasonable hours to property or premises containing fuel-oil-burning equipment.
The Commissioner or his delegated representatives shall observe the general rules and practices of the person whose property is entered for the purpose of making inspections, tests and investigations.
Tests by owners or operators. At his discretion, the Commissioner may require the owner or operator of any fuel-oil-burning equipment to submit to him a test, performed at the expense of the owner or operator, of such equipment by a licensed professional engineer or a qualified chemist or chemical engineer; may require an owner or operator to submit to him an analysis of the quantity and character of the matter discharged from a stack, duct, vent or other exhaust conduit or system, at the expense of the owner or operator, by a qualified chemist or chemical engineer; may require an owner or operator to submit to him an analysis of the fuel used in the fuel-oil-burning equipment, at the expense of the owner or operator, by a qualified chemist.
Smoke alarms. Oil-burning equipment using residual oil as a fuel and which has been declared a nuisance under § 81-3B shall provide for an approved-type smoke detection and control device commonly known as a "smoke alarm."
[Added 6-24-1964, approved 6-25-1964]
A device capable of being adjusted to detect the presence of varying densities of smoke and to cause the operation of audible and visible signals when producing smoke equivalent to or greater than No. 2 of the standard smoke chart. The smoke detection and control device shall be equipped, installed and operated so as to automatically cause the combustion process being monitored to cease operation after the production of such smoke for a period in excess of two minutes. This portion of the smoke detection and control device shall be known as the "automatic shutoff." The automatic shutoff shall prevent the operation until the fuel-burning equipment is adjusted to abate illegal emissions and the smoke detection control device is manually reset.
The signals produced by a smoke detection and control device to indicate the production of smoke shall be the sounding of a bell and the illumination of a red light, each of sufficient intensity and in such location as to be capable of attracting the attention of the person in charge or in control of the combustion equipment being monitored. The signals shall be so installed as to operate during the entire period that smoke equivalent to or greater than No. 2 of the standard smoke chart is produced and to continue to operate after the combustion process may have been halted by the automatic shutoff and until the smoke detection and control device is manually reset and the combustion process restored to proper operation.
Where a smoke detection and control device is required on an installation consisting of more than one complete combustion unit on a single stack, the shutoff or shutoffs shall be so designed and installed as to halt the operation of that unit or units responsible for smoke.
The automatic shutoff may be replaced by fully automatic combustion controls so devised and installed as to be actuated by the smoke alarm in such a manner as to automatically maintain proper operation.
All previous ordinances inconsistent with this chapter are hereby repealed.
This chapter shall take effect immediately.