What Was All That Smoke Last Night?


If you’re a New York City resident, and especially if you live in Brooklyn or Queens, you might have noticed the strong smell of burning rubber beginning at around 2 a.m. on Sunday. Smoke hung in the air and even filled subway stations, giving the mistaken impression that something on the train was malfunctioning or on fire. Wouldn’t you know it — the smell and smoke were coming from New Jersey.

The New York City Office of Emergency Management Tweeted a warning around 4 a.m., alerting insomniac Twitter readers that, “There is a three-alarm fire in Jersey City, New Jersey. As a result, [Brooklyn and Queens] residents may see or smell smoke.”

Gothamist reports that it was a three-alarm scrap-metal fire at 1 Linden Avenue East, which probably explains the rubber smell. A Gothamist reader writes:

I live near the Brooklyn Museum, off of Eastern Parkway, and the smell of fire and burning rubber was so strong that someone in my building called the fire department. We gathered on the steps at 2 am with other residents in our building. When people called 911, they had been told there was a warehouse or junkyard fire in New Jersey. It was really alarming-the air was thick with smoke and it smelled so strongly for a few hours.

It’s no blackout, but that’s a bit of neighborly solidarity.

This blogger was a tiny bit freaked by the haze underground and somewhat relieved that upon stepping up into the cold Brooklyn night, the smoke was even thicker. No one wants to die underground. Time and time again, the refrain remains the same: Thanks, New Jersey. We love you, too.

Photo via Noah Cohen via Gothamist

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