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Outdoor Fire Safety

Take Time To Fireproof Your Home During Spring Yard Maintenance

Spring can be an especially dangerous time for wildfires and grass fires. The Saint John Fire Department (SJFD) reminds residents that this a great time of year to implement FireSmart principles to your regular Spring yard work routine.

Preventative measures taken within 10 metres of your home will have the biggest impact. Fire embers may seem small, but an estimated 90 per cent of homes damaged or destroyed by wildland fire are ignited by sparks and embers. Regular maintenance and cleaning in the corners and crevices of your home and yard where needles and debris build up will leave nothing for embers to ignite.

Other tips and recommendations to make sure your home is fire safe this season:

  • Maintain a 1.5 metre non-combustible surface around your home and any attachments, like decks.
  • Dry leaves, twigs, needles, and branches are flammable and should be removed from your yard, under your deck, balconies, patios, and gutters.
  • Older deciduous trees can have rot and damage that make them susceptible to wildland fire. Homeowners should consider hiring an arborist or forester to help assess the condition of mature trees.
  • A mowed lawn is a fire-resistant lawn. Keep grass shorter than 10 centimetres in height to prevent it from burning as intensely.
  • Do not use bark or pine needle mulches within 10 metres of your home, as they are highly combustible. Gravel mulch and decorative crushed rock mulch significantly reduce the risk of wildland fire.
  • Remove combustible shrubs from the drip line of trees. Remove combustible shrubs from the drip line of trees.
  • Firewood piles should be stored at least 10 metres from your home.

The Saint John Fire Department does not issue burning permits. Burning for the purposes of clearing land, property, or the disposal of any material is prohibited.

With the mild winter Saint John experienced, SJFD is asking the public to be careful and ensure guidelines are followed when starting outdoor recreational fires this season.

To find out more about FireSmart Canada’s Homeowner Resources visit:

For more information on Outdoor Recreational Fire Guidelines, visit the of Saint John’s Outdoor Fire Safety page.