Boiler fire at Woburn Street School
Danger fire started at about am10:45 in the boiler, It is caused by a
delayed ignition. The Fire
Department responded to the scene and remained on site into the
Hooper confirmed that the boiler is built in 1963. The boiler, like all the heating systems in the schools, was previously serviced, cleaned, and test fired over the summer. In this case a pressure regulator valve failed. The fire was entirely contained inside the boiler, but smoke did emanate from the unit.
Superintendent Mary DeLai told the Town Crier that the Fire Department was still on the scene at 12:37 pm as the fire continued to smolder. She arrived at 1:00 pm and spoke to Dep. Donovan, though any smoke that had been in the boiler room had dissipated by that time.
“A limited amount of smoke did filter into the building but the custodian on site ventilated the building by opening windows and using fans,” said DeLai. Fire fighters took readings from carbon monoxide detectors throughout the building, though no CO was detected. By 3 PM the boiler was back to normal temperature.
Staff from the Department of Public Buildings checked the building Monday morning and reported no issues or concerns.
“There wasn’t any kind of hazard in terms of air quality,” assured Donovan, adding that there wasn’t any soot in the building and fans dissipated any fumes.
Hooper told the Town Crier that the pressure regulator has been replaced, new parts ordered, and the building is currently running on a back-up boiler.
“On behalf of Wilmington Public Schools and the Wilmington School Committee, we thank the Wilmington Fire Department for their quick response and for taking extra pre-caution by remaining at the building during the afternoon,” said DeLai in a statement. “ We also thank Mr. Hooper and custodian Mr. Richard Capone for responding to the building and for their diligence in ensuring that the building was ready and able to return to normal operations for Monday morning.”
The town has been making steady improvements to building infrastructure over the years, including changing heating systems over to gas where available. In fact, working with National Grid, a gas line was run to the Shawsheen School at no cost to the town. Changing over that heating system to gas is a project considered for next summer.
“If we can go to gas we will. Its more efficient and more reliable – it’s a win-win,” said Hooper.