Recreational fires allowed in parts of Whatcom County. but debris clearing still banned

Recreational fires once again are allowed in the unincorporated areas of Whatcom County. All other burning, including yard debris and land clearing fires, are still banned, according to a news release from the Whatcom County Fire Marshal.

The ban on recreational camp fires or bonfires, was lifted as of 4 p.m. Friday, Sept. 15.

A recreational fire can be no lager that 3X3 feet in size, and only use seasoned firewood or charcoal as fuel. It must be in an enclosure 16 inches high made of steel or rock. They must be 25 feet from any structures or other combustible materials such as trees, and there must be 15 feet of overhead clearance.

People are asked to check with state and federal agencies before burning, to see whether the fire is under the jurisdiction of the Department of Natural Resources. Call 1-800-323-BURN for burn permit information.

There is no burning with winds of 7 mph or higher, and a hose or 5-gallon bucket of water must be near by.

Violations of burn restrictions can result in a minimum fine of $250.

People may be held financially responsible if the fire spreads and causes damages, and may be criminally charged for reckless burning, according to the Fire Marshal’s Office.