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November 16, 2021

Truckee Meadows Fire & Rescue Announces Open Burning in December 2021

Reno, NV. November 16, 2021 – Open burning, also known as pile burning for residents who reside in the Truckee Meadows Fire Protection District (TMFPD) will be allowed effective December 1, 2021 through the end of the month, December 31, 2021, weather permitting, and with an approved burn permit. 

Open burning will resume March 19 – 31, 2022 with the same restrictions. 

Pile burning refers to the burning of cut and stacked vegetation, which is a useful method to reduce combustible vegetation and create defensible space. 

This year, open burning comes on the heels of the Fire District’s 11 days of green waste collection since October.  Additionally, Waste Management allows extra bags for curbside pickup during the month of November for residents in unincorporated Washoe County.  The Fire District encourages residents to take advantage of this program by bagging and discarding leaves and dry vegetation.

In order to reduce smoke sightings by residents which trigger fire response by Truckee Meadows Fire & Rescue crews, pile burning will be allowed only during the month of December under the following two conditions:

  1. With a 2021-2022 approved burn permit, when conditions allow. Previous or past burning permits are no longer valid.
  2. Only if it is a designated permissible burn day by Truckee Meadows Fire Protection District as noted here.

Pile burning on properties outside of the Truckee Meadows Hydrographic Basin 87 is limited to parcels 1 acre in size or larger. Parcels inside the Truckee Meadows Hydrographic Basin 87 must be 2 acres in size or larger.  After submitting the application online, users will be immediately approved or denied a burn permit based on their property location and parcel size.

Pile burning will be allowed throughout December as long as conditions permit and can change at any time. Residents are responsible for their burn and will held liable if they fail to abide by proper burning procedures and cause a wildfire. Nevada Revised Statue 474.550 provides that: “Any person, firm, association, or agency which willfully or negligently causes a fire may be charged with the expense incurred in the extinguishing the fire.

In order to burn, ALL residents must file a 2021-2022 Burn Permit with TMFPD.  The automated permit application can be accessed online 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. 

Before initiating any open burning, visit the home page of the Fire District’s website at www.tmfpd.us to determine whether or not it is a permissible burn day, or call the burn hotline at 775.328.6000, option 1.  If a red flag appears on the District’s homepage, burning will not be allowed under any circumstances. 

Residents must be aware of rules and regulations to burn in the Truckee Meadows to include:

  • Burn hours are sunrise to Noon, with no visible smoke after 1 p.m.  However, burning could end earlier due to an unexpected change of wind and weather.
  • Never burn when winds exceed 10 miles per hour.
  • The edge of the fire must be a minimum of 50 ft. from any structure and the pile must be limited in size to 4 ft. wide, 6 ft. high.
  • Burning can occur with a minimum of 25 ft. from any structure; however, the pile must be limited in size to 3 ft. wide, 2 ft. high.
  • Keep water or a fire extinguisher close by, along with hand tools to bury the fire when complete.

A permit is NOT required from TMFPD for residential recreational fires, outdoor fireplaces, portable outdoor fireplaces, or barbeque grills. A recreational fire is an outdoor fire in a fire pit or ring 3 feet or less in diameter and 2 feet or less in height where materials other than rubbish are being burned.

The Fire Code defines a recreational fire as being intended for cooking, warmth, religious, ceremonial, or other special purposes. A recreational fire shall not have a total fuel area greater than 3 feet in diameter and must be 2 feet or less in height.  Residents should check their Homeowner Association requirements on regulations governing recreational fires.

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