Burning & Burning Permits

STAGE ONE Fire Safety Burn Ban

DO NOT burn (in rural areas):

• Yard debris*

• To clear land

*State regulation prohibits the burning of yard debris in urban areas at all times, regardless of whether a ban has been issued.

OK to burn:

• Recreational fire

STAGE TWO Fire Safety Burn Ban


DO NOT burn:

ALL outdoor fires, including recreational and ceremonial fires

OK to use:

Manufactured portable outdoor devices like…

  • Gas and charcoal grills
  • Natural gas or propane appliances like patio warmers
  • Wood pellet smokers

Remember to carefully dispose of charcoal remains when done—douse thoroughly with water and wait several hours before removing for disposal

When there is no burn ban

Restrictions still apply to burning in unincorporated parts of King County, even when no fire burn ban has been issued.

  • Burning is restricted to property outside the urban growth boundary.
  • Fires to burn vegetation on residential property may only burn vegetation from the same property, and the fire can be no larger than 4x4x3 feet.
  • Contact your local fire department to see if you need a burning permit for your fire. (Recreational fires are exempt.)

Puget Sound Clean Air Agency regulations still apply for the regulation to limit environmental, health, and pollution problems.

  • Air quality burn bans may be issued even though there is no fire danger burn ban.
  • Burning to clear land for development (i.e., building a new structure or subdivision), is prohibited.
  • Burning garbage, paper, or other trash is strictly prohibited at all times.

Recreational fires

Definition: Campfires or those in backyard fire pits, using approved firewood for outdoor recreation, ceremonial uses, or cooking.

  • Firewood must be seasoned and dry.
  • The fire must be built in a metal or concrete fire pit, like those typically found in campgrounds.
  • The fire must not be used to dispose of debris.
  • The fire must grow no larger than three feet wide.
  • The fire must be in a clear spot, at least 10 feet away from all vegetation.
  • Overhanging branches must be at least 20 feet above the flames.
  • The fire must be at least 25 feet away from any structure.
  • The fire must always be attended by an alert person with equipment that can put out the fire (such as a shovel and a five-gallon bucket of water, or a connected and charged water hose).
  • After use, campfires must be completely extinguished by pouring water or moist soil over them and stirring with a shovel until all parts are cool to the touch.
  • No burning is allowed when the wind speed is greater than 15 miles per hour.
  • If smoke or ash from the fire causes a nuisance to any neighbors, the fire must be extinguished.

Burn Permits

Any outdoor residential burning and/or cooking and recreational fires must follow the directions and sign a copy of the burn permit.