• 68°

Summer burn ban expires

The Suffolk Department of Fire & Rescue Fire Prevention Bureau advises citizens that the summer burn ban expired on Sept. 30.

Open burning is now allowed with a permit for the disposal of leaves and tree, yard and garden trimmings located on private property. However, no household trash may be burned, as well as any other unapproved material listed in the city code. Failure to comply with a city ordinance governing open burning is a Class 1 misdemeanor and can result in a fine of up to $2,500 and one year in jail.

General open burning requires a permit from the Suffolk Fire Marshal’s Office. A burn permit must be available on-site and may be suspended or revoked by the fire official. Burning must be constantly attended, and on-site fire-extinguishing equipment must be available. The location for open burning shall be approved by the Fire Marshal’s Office. A fire official may order the extinguishment of any open burning which creates an objectionable situation.

Chimineas/fire bowls are considered recreational fires and are allowed by city code. Manufacturer’s instructions must be followed. Only approved materials such as firewood may be burned with a water source or fire extinguisher readily available. A safe distance from combustibles must be maintained. A device cannot be used to circumvent restrictions on general open burning, plus other code requirements.

Recreational fires do not require a permit; however, it is encouraged for citizens to call the Fire Marshal’s Office to discuss safe operation. Land-clearing debris may be burned under a different permit with different guidelines.

For more information, call at 514-4550 or email fireprevbureau@suffolkva.us to discuss open burning in relation to the city ordinance, as requirements vary by situation.