Sizzling Safety Tips for Backyard Fire Pits

We all like to enjoy an urban campfire and toasting marshmallows during the warmth summer months! But when you are using backyard fire pits this summer, follow these tips to ensure a safe, fun evening and ensure you are following the bylaw (10-17) guidelines:

Positioning is key to safety: 

  1.  Build fire pits into the ground, on brick or stone, or in a fire-proof container. 
  2.  Fire pits must NOT be under trees, branches, plants or other materials that can catch fire.
  3.  Place pits at least 2 meters away from any structure or property line. 
  4.  Do not place fire pits on a deck, porch, or in a covered gazebo. 

Keeping it under control:

Keep an eye on your fire to ensure it stays a reasonable size. Keeping fires small helps ensure embers, sparks and smoke do not blow onto or endanger nearby surfaces or people, and it’s always great to be considerate of your neighbours! Using a mesh screen or ‘spark guard’ is recommended to help reduce the spread of embers and sparks. And remember – all fires in your fire pit must be continually supervised. 

Only burn clean, dry firewood! Do NOT burn: 

  • Wood that is painted, treated or contains glue or resin
  • Wood from a different location, region or province
  • Wet or green/fresh cut wood
  • Yard waste (cut grass or leaves)
  • Garbage
  • Rubber or plastic
  • Furniture

Putting out the fire:

When the fun is done, have a way to put out the fire. Easy options are your watering hose or a bucket of water. Keep these close to your fire pit at all times in case of an emergency. 

Fire Advisories, Bans & Restrictions Currently 

Currently there are no fire restrictions for Okotoks.  Fire permits are required for any type of burning inside town limits, except campfires.  Safe campfires in approved Fire Pits are allowed in campgrounds and backyards.

Learn more about levels of the fire advisories, bans and restrictions in Okotoks.