Outdoor Burning

There is two types of open burning that is allowed within King County Fire District 28; Residential and Recreational burning.

 

Recreational Burning

Recreational burning or cooking fires are allowed within King County Fire District 28 (which includes the City of Enumclaw) They are defined as, “Cooking fires, campfires, and bonfires that occur in designated areas, or on private property, for cooking, pleasure, or ceremonial purposes”.  The following conditions must be met:

 

  •  -Must be contained in a pit constructed of steel, masonry, or concrete material.
  • - The bottom may be of sand, gravel, or mineral earth.
  •  -Does not require a spark arrestor.
  • - Maximum fuel size is 3x3x2.
  • - Must be at least 10 feet away from property lines. 
  • - Must be located 25 feet away from any structure (including decks or any other combustible material).  
  • - Only allowed to burn dried cord wood, presto logs, or charcoal.

 

Residential Burning

Residential burning is only allowed within certain portions of King County Fire District 28. Click here to see if your residence is located in an area where Residential Burning is permitted.

 

When are Permits Required?

Residential Burn Permits are required when burning anything other than dried cord wood or charcoal briquettes. Burn permits can be obtained at our headquarters station located at 1330 Wells Street.  Permits cost $30.00 (Thirty dollars) and are valid for one year from the date they are purchased.

Permit Conditions

  • ·        Natural vegetation is the only material allowed to be burned.
  • ·        Burning processed lumber of any type is prohibited.
  • ·        A water source is required to be on site at all times.
  • ·        Burning is only allowed during daylight hours.
  • ·        The maximum pile dimensions are 10 feet wide and 4 feet in height.
  • ·        Only one pile is allowed to be burned at a time.
  • ·        Burn piles are required to be a minimum of 10 feet away from property lines.
  • ·        Burn piles are required to be 50 feet away from any structures.
  • ·        Burn piles must be extinguished whenever there is a storm that results in east winds.
  • ·        A copy of the permit must be kept onsite at all times.

IMPORTANT

  • ·        Burning garbage is prohibited
  • ·        Materials hauled in from another site are prohibited (other than fire wood)
  • ·        Burning tree limbs larger than 4” (inches) in diameter are prohibited.
  • ·        Burning stumps is prohibited.
  • ·        Burn barrels are prohibited.

 

When can I burn?

Permit holders are required to call the Outdoor Burning Hotline (360-615-5670) daily prior to igniting their fire. Every morning the on-duty shift Captain makes the determination if it is a “burn day” or a “no burn day”. The determination is made by 9 am daily and is for a 24 hour period. The decision is based upon current or expected weather conditions. 

Ideally, smoke from residential fires is supposed to lift up into the atmosphere.  There are days where weather conditions do not allow smoke to lift. This is either from low cloud cover, temperature inversion, or precipitation.

 

Burning Greenery is Prohibited

Burning “green” or wet debris is prohibited. The reason is burning these fuels does not allow for complete combustion to occur. When there is not complete combustion there is a lot of unburned fuel particulates in the smoke which results in more air pollution. The Fire Department recommends that you pile up the debris and cover it with a tarp for a period of weeks prior to burning it. This allows the debris to dry out. Burning dry debris promotes clean combustion which results in less air pollution.

 

Be a good neighbor.

There are many times when the fire department is called because of bothersome smoke coming from a residential burn.  It is unlawful for you to “smoke out” your neighbors. The “right to burn” as a property owner (even with a valid permit) ends at your property line.  If the Fire Department is called to a smoke complaint and it is determined that your smoke is bothersome, you will be required to extinguish your fire.

 

Burn Bans

Burn bans can be imposed for two reasons; Air Quality and Fire Danger.  Puget Sound Clean Air Agency monitors the air quality within the Puget Sound Region. If pollution levels are high they will impose a burn ban.  This normally occurs during the fall and winter months when there is stagnant air.

 

The King County Fire Marshal will impose a burn ban if it is determined that there is a high fire danger. This usually occurs during the summer months.

 

Alternatives to Burning

There are alternatives to burning vegetation. The King County transfer station accepts vegetation at no cost (click here for directions).  Puget Sound Clean Air Agency’s website also offers many alternatives to burning vegetation. Click here for more information.