Update Regarding Campfires and Open Burning in Petrolia

Posted: April 3, 2020

Update Regarding Campfires and Open Burning in Petrolia

The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) has issued a statement regarding fire bans in Ontario.  The announcement states that there will be a fire ban within their legislated region.  The fire ban does not cover the entire province.  Southwestern Ontario is not in MNRF’s legislated area.

At this time, Petrolia and North Enniskillen Fire Chief, Jay Arns has not issued this ban for Petrolia.  The municipalities that have taken this approach have done so if they face staffing concerns and wish to reduce the risk of grass/wildland fires.

Please see below for information regarding Open Air Burning within Town of Petrolia.

Like any Town in Ontario the Ontario Fire Code, Environmental Protection Act and the Fire Protection and Prevention Act regulate burning of materials within the Town of Petrolia. Controlled burning of material falls into three main categories, which help to determine the guidelines for each type of controlled burn.

“Recreational Fire” is a fire that is a small outdoor fire such as a campfire set within a small area or device such as an outdoor fireplace or fire pit, situated in a safe location measuring no more than 27” (0.7m) in any dimension.

“Cooking Fire” means a fire with sole purpose to cook food. Small confined fire examples are a grill or barbeque.

“Open Air Burning” is a fire set in the Open Air that does not fall under recreational or cooking fire, ignited with purpose to clear and burn material collected from the property on which the burn is taking place. Examples of this type are clearing of brush and clean wood.

All the above fires have strict guidelines on burning.

  1. Clean Class “A” (wood, paper etc. clean with no contaminants, examples might include tree, scrap clean lumber, etc.)
  2. Must always have adult supervision
  3. Means of extinguishment available (garden hose, extinguisher or ability to apply dirt)
  4. Weather conditions are favourable. For example: no wind drifting smoke into neighbour’s property

In the case of Open air burning as in clearing of land or brush:

  1. A permit must be obtained from the Town of Petrolia town office
  2. All neighbours within one kilometer of the burn must be notified
  3. Burn only between 08:00 to 18:00 (8:00-6:00 p.m.)
  4. No burning of any hazardous materials, petroleum-based products, roofing materials, tires, pressure treated lumber, etc.
  5. Approval for a burn permit requires contact with Petrolia North Enniskillen Fire Department through the permit application process.

A permit is required for any Open Air Burning other than Cooking or Recreational fires within the Town of Petrolia. Recreational fires are considered campfires for family enjoyment.

Failure to obtain an Open-air burning permit as outlined in Town of Petrolia by-Law # 40-2013 may result in a Fire Department Response incurring fines and costs associated with the response.

For more information:

Jay Arns                                                                                                

Fire Chief/Director of Protective Services/Community Emergency Management Coordinator                    

Town of Petrolia                                                                                             

411 Greenfield Street                                                                                   

Petrolia, Ontario, N0N 1R0                                                                                     


E-mail: jarns@petrolia.ca