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Watertown Fire Dept. » Burn Permits

Burn Permits

Click Here to Apply for a Burn Permit


Burn Permit Information

A burn permit is required for any outdoor burning within the City of Watertown. This applies to both open fire pits and all manufactured fire pit devices.

Burn permits are free of charge and are available Monday through Friday between the hours of 8:00 AM and 4:30 PM at the Watertown Fire Department located at 106 Jones Street.

Below are rules governing open burning in the city of Watertown. These rules are listed on the burn permit.

Pursuant to that section and Section 16.11(5), the permit holder shall have the following responsibilities: (a) To adhere to all health and fire prevention codes, and (b) To have adult supervisory personnel present at the site of the open burning, and (c) To comply with the following regulations of the Watertown Fire Department.

The Fire shall be limited by the following conditions:

1. Any fire deemed to be a public health nuisance by the fire chief or his or her designee shall be extinguished.

2. The fire shall be for recreational or ceremonial purposes only.

3. This permit shall apply to all manufactured burning rings, fireplaces, fire pits, chimneys or like devices.

4. No manufactured device shall be placed on any combustible surface.

5. The fire must be completely extinguished before the fire location may be left unsupervised.

6. The fire shall be no larger than three (3) feet in diameter. SEE EXCEPTION

7. No flammable liquids shall be used to start or support the burning.

8. Only virgin wood and charcoal fuel will be allowed to be burned.

9. Under no circumstances will plastics, trash, garbage, oils, hydrocarbon fuels, furniture, fabrics, leaves, yard waste, synthetic
materials of any kind, pressure-treated wood or wood that has been finished with paints, varnishes, laminates or a similar finish be

10. The fire shall not be located less than ten (10) feet from property lines nor less than twenty (20) feet from any building or structure. (This does not apply to manufactured devices.)

11. A functional extinguishing aid must be present, such as a fire extinguisher, garden hose, etc.

EXCEPTION: A bonfire is allowed under this permit ONLY for Churches, Organized Schools, and Civic Organizations and only if application for site review has been made and approved by the Watertown Fire Department. Such bonfire shall be NO MORE than 10′ in diameter or 10’x10′ square and NO MORE than 6′ High and MUST comply with all other provisions of this permit.

Section 16.11(6) of the Watertown Municipal Ordinances allows that the Fire Chief, in times of extreme dryness or drought, deficiency in the water supply or by reason of any other emergency, is authorized to prohibit the setting of any fires upon any lands within the City of Watertown.

The Fire Chief may revoke this permit for violating any provision of this permit.