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Outdoor fires must be contained in a proper device

Outdoor Fire Safety

Outdoor recreational fires are a popular activity particularly during the summer months. While the Province of New Brunswick issues burning permits and advisories according to conditions in various areas of the province, cities in New Brunswick are responsible for the regulation and enforcement of controlled outside burning within their municipal boundaries. Each city has its own by-laws regarding outdoor fires. 

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


  • Property owners are permitted to burn approved materials for recreational purposes in the proper manner.
  • Recreational fires can be contained in an approved retail unit and/or at site that satisfies the requirements as listed
  • Approved materials consist of clean wood or wood products (no chemically treated wood or building materials.)


  • Must not be used on a combustible deck or surface unless approved for such use (ULC or WHI).
  • Must be used with all screens in place and closed.
  • No treated wood is to be used as fuel. (e.g. pentox or creosote).
  • No refuse or garbage is to be burned.
  • No chemically treated wood is to be used as fuel (e.g. Presto Logs).
  • Must have a 10-litre pail of water or a connected garden hose nearby while in use.
  • Must maintain proper clearance from combustibles (1.5m from buildings and fuel supplies, 3m from tall grass and 15m from wooded areas).
  • Some units require clearance from bottom of unit to ground. 
  • Must follow manufacturer's instructions.
  • Must not be left unattended while in operation and all embers extinguished when fire has been completed and not left to burn out on its own.
  • Must not be overloaded (screens must be kept closed except for when charging the unit).
  • Open circles of rocks and tire rims (campfires or bonfires) are not permitted under this approval, and home-made devices must incorporate a screen having an opening of not more than 12mm when being used as a recreational fireplace.


  • 1.5 meters from combustibles
  • 15 meters from wooded areas 
  • 3 meters from tall grass
  • Screens must be a maximum of 12 mm

Not Screened:

  • 150 meters from wooded areas or other property structures
  • Do not burn in high wind conditions
  • Backyard fireplaces (retail units) must be used in conjunction with manufacturer's instructions and U.L.C., W.H.I. approved usage methods