Open Burning & Burn Permits


A.  No person shall burn, cause to be burned, or permit to be burned any fire outside of a building with the following exceptions. Both the person igniting such fire and the owner of the land upon which such fire may occur shall be equally responsible for compliance with the requirements of this section.

B.  All open burning shall comply with the following:

(1) Before a property owner is authorized to set a fire on his/her property, the property owner must contact the Vernon Fire Department at 662-2079 and record the following information on the answering machine:

(a) Name of property owner.

(b) Person authorized to set fire.

(c) Address and phone number where fire is being set.

(d) Date and time of said fire.

(2) The size of the pile of material burned shall not exceed four feet by four feet by three feet, except as provided in Subsection B(4).

(3) Any open pile of material burned shall be at least 50 feet from any structure, wood or lumber pile or wooden fence, or other combustible material, and provisions shall be made to prevent the fire from spreading to within 50 feet of such items.

(4) Burning shall be allowed in barrels or containers only if such barrels or containers are constructed and vented so as to prevent smoke from spreading beyond property lines that is offensive to neighboring property owners. Barrels and containers used for burning shall be kept at least 25 feet from any structure or material described in Subsection B(3)above.

(5) Such burning and the disposal of ash residue shall not be permitted on or within any improved street, drainage ditch, alley, parkway, public place, or public right-of-way.

(6) Fuel for burning shall consist of dry material only and shall not be ignited with flammable or combustible liquid.

(7) Material for burning shall not include rubbish, garbage, trash, any material made of or coated with rubber, plastic, leather or petroleum-based materials and may not contain any flammable liquids.

(8) No burning shall be permitted between 1/2 hour after sunset and 7:00 a.m., and all fires shall be completely extinguished by 1/2 hour after sunset. Burning shall be prohibited when the wind velocity exceeds nine miles per hour or when drought conditions exist.

(9) Burning shall be physically supervised by a competent person at least 18 years of age and personally attended by such person within sight of such burning until such fire is completely extinguished. Necessary extinguishing agents shall be readily available.

(10) No fire shall be conducted or permitted which results in smoke that is offensive to neighboring property owners or creates a nuisance for others.

C.  Burning of stumps in place, wood for construction purposes, or clearing of land shall be permitted only under the following conditions:

(1) Authorization for said burning is obtaining from the Fire Chief or his designee.

(2) Burning complies with the requirements of § NR 429.04, Open Burning, Wis. Adm. Code.

(3) Burning complies with NFPA 10.11.

D.  The following are exempt from the provisions of this section:

(1) Cooking fires and barbecue pits, grills and outdoor fireplaces.

(2) Any fires inside of a structure, including but not limited to fireplaces and incinerators.

(3) Fires set for training or instruction of fire fighters or testing of fire equipment.

(4) Fire specifically approved in writing by the Fire Chief or his designee.

E.  The Town Chairperson and/or Fire Chief or his designee may suspend all burning or attach additional restrictions to burning when deemed necessary due to atmospheric or other conditions. The Fire Chief, or his/her designee, is responsible for maintaining the answering system.

F.  Any person who shall violate any provision of this section or any regulation made hereunder shall be issued a citation with the forfeiture stated at $50, plus court costs, for the first violation and $100, plus court costs, for subsequent violations. In addition to such forfeitures and costs, in the event a violation results in the response of the Vernon Fire Department, said violator shall be assessed an additional charge of $200, said assessment to be paid to the Town of Vernon.