Generally, a Fire Permit from your fire brigade is required in addition to Council's Open Burning approval.
In order to gain approval to burn in the open, you must satisfy either of the two criteria below:
- Land that is 4,000 square metres (one acre) or greater
- Land is designated as Extreme Risk under the Hawkesbury Bush Fire Risk Management Plan
(properties located at Bowen Mountain, Colo Heights, Lower Portland, Tabaraga Ridge – Kurrajong Heights, “The Islands Estate”, Blaxlands Ridge and Yarramundi under the Hawkesbury Risk Management Plan.)
If your property does not satisfy either of the two criteria above, please contact Council to discuss.
Piles MUST be constructed and burnt in accordance to the NSW RFS Pile Burn Standards (pdf - 418KB) particularly that:
- Material that is to be burnt must only be dead vegetation from the locality, not household or building material such as plastics, wooden pallets, metal or cardboard boxes (please note it is illegal to burn treated timbers or tyres anywhere in NSW)
- Piles should be 2 metres x 2 metres x 1.5 metres high; and
- There is 2 metres clearance around the pile/s
- Pile(s) are 20 metres from any building.
- Logs over 15cm in diameter should not be added to piles.
- Notify all residents who adjoin the site of the pile burn at least 24 hours prior to the work and any other residents who might be affected by the pile burn.
- Pile burning shall NOT occur for more than 3 days in a row. Be mindful of the time requirements below.
If your desired pile burn exceeds the dimensions as stated above, please contact Council. You can be fined if you do not comply with the pile burn standards.
THE BUSH FIRE DANGER PERIOD IS FROM OCTOBER 1 TO 31 MARCH, HOWEVER IT MAY VARY DUE TO LOCAL CONDITIONS
FIRES MUST BE PUT OUT BY THE END OF THE DAY AND NOT SMOULDER OVERNIGHT.
**Within the bushfire fire danger period - October to March unless otherwise declared - burning shall only be conducted between 8am and midnight on any day (the fire cannot burn all night).
**Outside the bushfire danger period - April to September unless otherwise declared - burning shall only be conducted between 8am and 5pm on any day (fire must be out by 5pm).
Clean Air Regulation Terms and Conditions - please click here for further information
- Only dry and dead vegetation originating on a property that is included in this approval shall be burnt on that property.
- Within the Bushfire Season / Fire Danger Period burning shall only be conducted between 8am – 12am (midnight) on any day. Outside the Bushfire Season / Fire Danger Period to be conducted between 8am – 5pm on any day.
- A responsible supervising adult over the age of 18 shall be on site at all times with enough water to extinguish the fire, if required, for that time the fire is active.
- In the event of a Total Fire Ban being declared, this approval is suspended. Any existing fire is to be extinguished and cannot be recommenced until the Total Fire Ban is lifted.
- In the event of a No Burn Day being declared, this approval is suspended for the duration of the declaration.
- All adjoining neighbours (including those divided by road or watercourse) should be notified of your intention to burn at least 24 hours prior to burning.
- This form should be completed at least 24 hours prior to your intention to burn.
- Burning must at all times be carried out by such practical means as are necessary to prevent or minimise air pollution. The potential for smoke impacting on any person due to wind direction and weather conditions must be taken into account.
- Pile burning of dry and dead vegetation should NOT be seen as the best method for disposing of dry and dead vegetation. Alternative means of disposal such as re-use; recycling; composting; disposal through Council's waste service, kerbside collection service or waste management facility; should be thoroughly investigated and are the preferred disposal methods.
- Any residue waste from the burning must be disposed of in an environmentally satisfactory manner and in accordance with the Protection of the Environment Operations Act 1997 and the Protection of the Environment Operations (Waste) Regulation 1996. On completion of the burn, the burnt area must be maintained in a condition that minimises or prevents the emission of dust from the area and prevents sediment or ash from fires being washed from the area into waters.
It is prohibited to burn:
- For the purposes of bush fire hazard reduction. Bush fire hazard reduction burns are not covered under this Notice. Such burns need to be assessed and approved under the Rural Fires Act 1997 and residents should apply to the relevant local authority.
- Ecological/bush regeneration burns to be carried out in vegetation which is listed as an Endangered Ecological Community (EED) or which is habitat for threatened species will require a licence from DECCW.
This approval does NOT include:
- The burning of other matter other than dead and dry vegetation grown on the property
- The burning of vegetation resulting from land clearance. Development consent is required for the clearing of native vegetation which can be obtained from Council
- The burning of vegetation which has been cleared for commercial development or building construction as development consent must be obtained from Council
- The removal of dead or dying trees as written notification need to be proved to Council under it’s Tree Preservation Order
- The removal or burning of native vegetation that comprises an EEC or habitat for threatened species which requires assessment and approval under the Rural Fires Act.
10/50 Vegetation Clearing
New laws are now in place to help people prepare their homes for bush fires in NSW. You can find out if your property is in a 10/50 Vegetation Clearing Entitlement Area using by visiting the NSW Rural Fire Service website here.
NSW Fire Permits – Do you need one?
Depending on the type fire, a Fire Permit may be required all year round or only during the Bush Fire Danger Period. Always seek clarification with the NSW Rural Fire Service or Fire and Rescue NSW.
During the bush fire danger period (October 1 to 31 March) you are required to obtain a Fire Permit prior to conducting any burning. A Fire Permit can be obtained from the NSW Rural Fire Service. In addition, you must also notify Council.
For properties within McGraths Hill, Windsor Downs, Bligh Park, South Windsor, Windsor, Vineyard, Clarendon, Richmond and North Richmond – you are required to obtain a Fire Permit from Fire & Rescue NSW at all times throughout the year. In addition, you must also notify Council.
A Fire Permit is required all year round for any fire lit within a Fire & Rescue NSW area.
Failing to comply
Note that on-the-spot fines of $500 for an individual and $1000 for a corporation may be issued under the Protection of the Environment Operations Act for the following offences:
- Burning otherwise than to prevent/ minimise air pollution
- Burn a prohibited article (e.g waste, treated timber, tyres etc)
- Burn without an approval or not in accordance with an approval
In the event of a prosecution, the maximum penalty is $5,500 for an individual and $11,000 for a corporation.
Heavy fines may also be issued by the NSW Rural Fire Service.
By completing the form below, you are acknowledging and complying with your obligations to notify both Hawkesbury City Council and the NSW Rural Fire Service of your intention to burn dead vegetation for no more than 3 days during the prescribed hours.
You are required to submit this form at least 24 hours prior to your intention to burn.
You are also required to notify all your adjoining neighbours at least 24 hours prior to burning.
Council is bound by the provisions of the Privacy and Personal Information Protection Act 1998, in the collection, storage and utilisation of personal information provided in this form. Accordingly, the personal information will only be utilised for the purposes for which it has been obtained and may be available for public access and/or disclosure under various NSW Government legislation.