Call your town­ship be­fore spark­ing that fire

The Glengarry News - Glengarry Supplement - - News - – An­gela Brown

North Glen­garry wants to re­mind res­i­dents the con­trolled burn or open-air fire by­law is in ef­fect so be­fore burn­ing brush, they will need to no­tify the town­ship and re­quest a burn per­mit.

Once they have ob­tained per­mis­sion, the home­own­ers must no­tify Hawkes­bury Fire dis­patch ser­vice at 613-632-1105 be­fore start­ing an out­door fire, and again to in­di­cate when they have ex­tin­guished it.

Res­i­dents must ex­tin­guish all fires by dusk.

North Glen­garry is­sues about 450 burn per­mits each year, but only about 100 cases ac­tu­ally need a per­mit. Peo­ple us­ing fire for recre­ational pur­poses don’t re­quire a per­mit. Res­i­dents don’t need per­mits for a recre­ational fire used for cook­ing or warmth, an out­door fire­place, or when cook­ing on a grill. How­ever, an out­door fire­place needs to be cov­ered com­pletely by a spark-guard.

Res­i­dents do re­quire burn per­mits when they are con­duct­ing larger out­door fires to burn piles of brush to clear land or to get rid of large tree branches dam­aged by wind. They are not al­lowed to burn ma­te­rial other than brush. For these types of burns, the town­ship usu­ally is­sues a four-day burn per­mit. Af­ter that time, res­i­dents must re­new the per­mit if they are still com­plet­ing their con­trolled burn. The town­ship has re­vised the by­law, so res­i­dents can ob­tain a 14-day per­mit. They will need to de­scribe the de­tails of their plans for the burn in ad­vance.

The town­ship will charge $25 for any burn per­mits and will is­sue the per­mit within a two­day pe­riod af­ter it is re­quested. There is no charge for per­mits is­sued from Jan­uary to March. Res­i­dents who fail to ob­tain a per­mit to con­duct a burn can be fined $400. Fines are also in place for other re­lated in­frac­tions.

Plan­ning man­ager Gerry Mur­phy in­di­cated the rea­son the town­ship has a two-day wait time is be­cause of­ten res­i­dents re­quest their per­mit on a Fri­day af­ter­noon and the town­ship needs time to re­view the de­tails of the re­quest be­fore it can is­sue the per­mit. Prop­erty own­ers also can ap­ply for their per­mit on the town­ship’s web­site, or if they are plan­ning only a small recre­ational fire they can find out what steps they should take in no­ti­fy­ing Hawkes­bury fire dis­patch. In all cases, res­i­dents need to know how to con­duct a safe fire, know what ma­te­ri­als they are per­mit­ted to burn in the town­ship, and to en­sure their fire is set back away from any com­bustible items.

As well, the fire must be at least 50 me­tres from the clos­est neigh­bours’ house and at least five me­tres from their prop­erty line.

Res­i­dents are not al­lowed to con­duct an open-air fire be­tween half an hour be­fore sunset and half an hour af­ter sunrise. As well, they are not per­mit­ted to set a fire if the wind ve­loc­ity is greater than 15 kilo­me­tres per hour.

Res­i­dents are not per­mit­ted to con­duct burns dur­ing dry pe­ri­ods as in­di­cated by the Fire Chief or the Min­istry of Nat­u­ral Re­sources. Full de­tails of the by­law are avail­able on the town­ship’s web­site.

UN­DER CON­TROL: An out­door fire is great, un­til you set the con­ces­sion alight. Cau­tion can never be thrown to the wind, par­tic­u­larly dur­ing dry con­di­tions.

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