updated 3/31/2007 12:51:33 AM ET 2007-03-31T04:51:33

A rabbi’s school bus retrofitted into an oven to bake matzos for Passover may be out of business.

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Deputy building inspector Manny Carmona sent a letter Friday forbidding Rabbi Aaron Winternitz from using his contraption, which is located behind his house.

“My department is not satisfied this oven is safe to use,” he said.

The old, red and white bus had been converted into a supersized oven for Passover matzos — complete with a smokestack, exhaust fans and working fire.

Carmona ordered the rabbi earlier this week to move the bus at least 10 feet from the house, disconnect the unauthorized gas line fueling the oven, and prove that a licensed engineer had overseen the project. But in the end, he decided any changes that had been made were insufficient.

Winternitz had been making the unleavened bread inside the bus for his 50-member Congregation Mivtzar Hatorah for the past three Passovers. The bus was discovered by authorities after a neighbor complained of smoke.

Matzo is eaten during Passover week to illustrate how the Jews had no time to let their bread rise as they fled slavery in Egypt.


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