Recreational Fires: Campfire and Fire Pit Guide Regulations
A chimenea is a freestanding front-loading fireplace or oven with a bulbous body and usually a vertical smoke vent or chimney. Fires start very quickly in chimineas after ignition with papers and small pieces of wood. When in full burn after just 15 minutes, they give off tremendous heat due to their design which allows much more air to be drawn in than, for example, a fire basket.
Wood-fueled Portable Outdoor Fireplace
A commercially purchased portable, outdoor, solid-fuel-burning fireplace that may be constructed of steel, concrete, clay, or other non-combustible material. A portable outdoor fireplace may be open in design or may be equipped with a small hearth opening and a short chimney or chimney opening at the top. These devices must be operated according to the manufacturers' instructions with all covers, screens, spark arresters, and grates in place. Portable outdoor fireplaces shall not be operated within 30 feet of a structure or combustible material.
Charcoal grills use either charcoal briquettes or all-natural lump charcoal as their fuel source. The charcoal, when burned, will transform into embers radiating the heat necessary to cook food. Charcoal grill fires at private residences or within a permanently constructed grate in a developed park, campground or picnic area are allowed during fire restrictions. Portable charcoal grills are not allowed during fire restrictions. Charcoal barbeque grills shall not be closer than 30 feet from an undeveloped area (2015 IFC 308.1.6)
Gas-fueled Fire Pits and Grills
Defined as liquid or gas-fueled appliances that burn liquid or gaseous fuels and can be shut off. This does not include any device that burns solid fuels such as wood or charcoal and which must be extinguished. Gas-fueled fire pits or grills at private residences or within a developed park, campground, or picnic area and are not closer than 30 feet from an undeveloped area and not closer than 15 feet of a structure or combustible material is allowed during Jefferson County fire restriction (308.1.6), (307.4.3).
Gas-fueled Heating Devices
Any fires contained within liquid-fueled or gas-fueled stoves, lanterns or heating devices are allowed during fire restrictions. Gas-fueled appliances such as deck and patio heaters that burn liquid or gaseous fuels and can be shut off. This does not include any device that burns solid fuels such as wood or charcoal and which must be extinguished.
Following are the general requirements for recreational fires as specified by the International Fire Code, in combination with specific recommendations of Evergreen Fire/Rescue:
- It is important to call in to the non-emergency Dispatch line before lighting a recreational fire and to call again when the fire has been extinguished. They may be reached at 303-980-7300 and are available 24 hours a day.
- Fires should be supervised by a competent adult at all times.
- Burning of slash, pine needles, trash or construction debris is not allowed.
- If the Evergreen Fire Protection District is under a FIRE BAN no outdoor live fires will be allowed. This ban will include wood-fueled campfires, charcoal, pellet or wood BBQ’s and smokers. Only a fully enclosed gas BBQ or gas-fueled fire pit may be used during a fire ban and must be attended at all times.
- Campfire and fire pit fires will be a minimum of 30 feet from any structure, vegetation, or combustible material.
- The maximum diameter of a fire ring is 3 feet.
- The maximum flame height will be 2 feet.
- The maximum log length is 16 inches.
- A 5 gallon container of water, charged garden hose (turned on) or portable fire extinguisher with a minimum 10 lb. Dry Chemical ABC should be at the site of the fire ring and a shovel to stir the coals as needed during extinguishment.
Remember recreational fires are not allowed during a fire ban. It is also possible that when you call in a campfire prior to lighting that you may be advised against a fire due to high wind conditions or other temporary hazards. Visit our website to find more information on fire restrictions and bans at Fire Restrictions and Bans.