Open-air fire laws passed in North Perth

·3 min read

NORTH PERTH – At North Perth’s April 25 council meeting, the municipality voted unanimously to impose a new bylaw that changes the rules on open-air fires. The new by-law affects recreational and non-recreational fires.

Recreational fires are permitted in both urban and rural areas. The fires must be contained in a pre-approved type of appliance (burn barrels are not permitted) and fires have to be:

No larger than 0.75 metres (30 inches) in diameter;

No more than one metre (40 inches) in height, including flame height;

In a safe distance of approximately 7.5 metres (25 feet) from any building, structure, or combustible object;

Supervised at all times by a competent person who is at least 18 years of age;

Using clean, dry wood and not rubber, plastic, household garbage, recyclable materials, or anything that will produce noxious odours.

In addition, propane and natural gas is allowed if used over 3 metres from any combustible material, with 2.1 metres of overhead clearance. A charged garden hose has to be available and near when the fire is active.

No permit is required for recreational fires.

Non-recreational fires

Non-recreational fires are only permitted in rural areas. They have a separate, larger set of rules associated with them. They include:

A burn permit is required for fires exceeding three metres in diameter.

The fire chief, or designate, is to be notified of an intent to set a non-recreational fire at least one hour prior.

Non-recreational fires are only allowed during daylight hours.

The fire must be a safe distance of approximately 30 metres from any building, structure, or combustible object.

The fire must be supervised at all times by a competent person who is at least 18 years of age. The supervising adult must have a method of communicating in the event of an emergency.

Fires should not be started when the wind speed exceeds 20 kilometres per hour.

Burning of rubber, plastic, household garbage, recyclable materials, and materials that produce noxious odours to the surrounding neighbourhood is prohibited.

A source of extinguishment is required at the site while the fire is burning.

All reasonable steps have been taken to ensure that adjacent properties and individuals are protected from fire hazards and are not adversely affected by the fire.

Burn barrels are not permitted.

Burning the remains of a demolished structure requires 48 hours notice for site inspection.

Permits can be obtained by calling the fire administration office, Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. “Confirmation by the fire chief or designate, along with a burn permit number, is required before the fire is lit.”

Under this new bylaw, the fire chief may declare a fire ban if they believe “conditions exist” which threaten the safety of North Perth. They have the authority to ban “any and all” fires.

By not following the rules or setting a fire without authorization, the owner will be responsible for the cost of dispatching the fire department, if they are called to the scene. They will also be subject to a fine.

Connor Luczka, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Listowel Banner

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