Why is this bylaw needed?
KFR has witnessed a steady increase in calls surrounding open-air fires and unsafe burning practices. This year, KFR has seen a 75 per cent increase in response calls from 2015.
If adopted by City Council, this proposed bylaw would introduce a free permitting process that would require residents to read open-air fires regulations. This would help ensure residents are informed about the regulations they must follow to protect themselves, their families, their property, their neighbours, and first responders.
Will open air fires still be permitted in the City under this proposed bylaw?
Yes, open air fires would still be permitted. Residents will have information in advance and will be required to follow bylaw regulations.
Are propane/natural gas appliances, charcoal BBQ’s, and smokers exempted from the proposed by-law?
Yes, appliances with mechanical shut-offs (e.g. propane or natural gas appliances), charcoal BBQ’s, and smokers are outside the scope of the proposed by-law and will not require permits.
Please review the following definition from the proposed by-law:
“Open Air Fire” means the burning of material, including but not limited to untreated wood and wood fibre products such as non-laminated paper, cardboard and boxboard, brush, tree limbs, leaves, and branches, where the flame is not wholly contained, and includes Agricultural Fires, Brush Fires, Campfires and Outdoor Appliance Fires, but does not include the use of appliances with mechanical shut-offs (e.g. propane or natural gas appliances)
When would the bylaw take effect?
If adopted by Council, KFR is recommending that the Open-Air Fires Bylaw take effect in 2021.
I have an approved appliance under the current operating guideline. Will I still be able to use it if this new bylaw comes into effect?
If you have an approved open-air fire appliance, like a chiminea with a spark arrestor, and you meet the regulations outlined in the bylaw, you will be able to enjoy it.
Why was a permit fee being proposed?
It has been shown that public education is one of the most effective methods for reducing fires. Fees collected through open-air permitting would be invested into public education.
Based on a resident feedback, KFR has determined that the permitting process will be free to residents in 2021.
Does this include fireworks?
The proposed bylaw would not apply to fireworks.
How were regulations in the bylaw developed?
KFR developed regulations in the bylaw following extensive research into how other municipalities regulate open-air fires, and taking into account Kingston's unique characteristics.