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Outdoor Burning: Recreational Fires

Outdoor Burning: Recreational Fires

Renton Regional Fire Authority receives calls each year regarding recreational fires.  Recreational fires are defined as cooking fires, campfires, charcoal barbecues, and bonfires in designated areas or on private property for cooking, pleasure or ceremonial purposes.  Fires lit in chimneys, fire pits, fire bowls and similar free-standing devices (except burn barrels which are illegal) fall under this definition.  They are allowed in both urban and unincorporated areas.

Put Fire Safety First And Ensure You Meet These Requirements:

  • Keep fires small. Fires must not exceed three feet in diameter or two feet in height.
  • Only use the allowed fuel. Charcoal, dried firewood or manufactured fire logs may be used. It is illegal to burn anything else.
  • Stay clear of structures. Fires are required to be 25 feet away from structures or combustible items (such as a fence).
  • Constant attendance is required. A person capable of extinguishing the fire must be present at all times, and the fire must be extinguished before leaving.
  • Mind all bans. Recreational fires are always prohibited during air-quality and fire-safety burn bans.
  • Be a good neighbor. If smoke from your fire bothers your neighbors, damages their property or otherwise causes a nuisance, you must immediately put it out.

This information comes from the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency (www.pscleanair.org) and the International Fire Code as adopted by law, which regulates outdoor burning.

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