Burning Permits

Open Burning season runs January 15th to April 30th

The first time each season you wish to burn you must come into fire headquarters and fill out an information card. Once you have filled out the info card each day you plan on burning you must call the Fire Department at (978) 630-4051 before 1:00 p.m. to let us know you intend to burn.

BURNING PERMITTED ONLY BETWEEN 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m
The fire shall be supervised at all times, AND AT LEAST 75 FEET AWAY FROM ANY DWELLING. Applicant shall have sufficient men and equipment to control the fire. The fire shall be extinguished completely before attendant leaves. The person holding the permit is liable for any damage caused.

NO RUBBISH – Burning restricted to tree branches, brush and garden debris. Burning will be restricted to garden debris and small piles of tree trimmings in cleared areas only.

Fire Department permission is needed for each day
The Fire Department reserves the right to cancel burning on any day if a change of wind or any dangerous condition creates a fire hazard. If a smoke nuisance is caused by such burning, your permit will be revoked.

Fire starters must be of a smoke minimizing type:

RUBBER TIRES ARE NOT PERMITTED. REGULATORY AUTHORITY: M.G.L. c 48 s 13. Violation punished by a fine of not more than $500 plus the cost of suppression or by imprisonment for not more than one month or both.

State Open Air Burning Regulations

  • The Commonwealth of Massachusetts allows open air burning from January 15 to May 1 of each year.
  • Only garden preparation and tree trimming material may be burned (no leaves or stumps).
  • Burning sites need to be inspected by the Fire Department prior to use.
  • Burning is allowed from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., at which time all burning must be concluded.
  • Burning must be constantly attended and a garden hose or water source must be readily available.
  • Burning sites must be located at least 75 feet from structures and materials cannot be piled higher than 3 feet, longer than 25 feet, or wider than 10 feet.
  • Once a permit is obtained from the Fire Department, it is good for the remainder of the burning season, and no further inspections will be made.
    • A telephone call to the department must be made prior to burning in order to activate the permit and ensure that burning is allowed on any particular day (high winds or dry conditions will negate open burning).