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Burning Off

Using fire for cooking or warmth

What can I use?

You can use a barbeque for the purpose of cooking food for human consumption. You can also use a brazier or a chiminea for the purposes of heating. You must ensure that there is no nuisance caused by the emission of smoke, soot, ash or odours. A Permit to Burn is not required for these activities.

Can I have an incinerator?

No, you can't. An owner or occupier of land must not construct, erect, install, use or permit to be used an incinerator on any land.

What is a Permit to Burn?

A Permit to Burn helps you burn off in a way that is safe and responsible. It reduces fire hazard and prepares your property before the Fire Danger Period.

Some Knox residents are able to burn off in the open air with a valid Permit to Burn. You are only able to burn off at certain times of the year.

Knox City Council determines who can burn off on a case-by-case basis. You must apply for consideration.

Apply for a Permit to Burn

Penalties apply to Knox residents burning off without a valid Permit.

Can I burn off?

If you own, rent, or live in a property in the Bushfire Management Overlay (BMO) you may be eligible for a Permit to Burn. Outside of the BMO it is unlikely that a Permit will be issued unless there are extenuating circumstances. If a Permit is issued outside of the BMO there is a Permit fee of $64.

The BMO is a planning control applied to land at risk from bushfires.

There is to be no burning off on Total Fire Ban days, during the Fire Danger Period or in June or July.

Apply for a Permit to Burn

Before you apply

Permits will expire on the Declaration of the Fire Danger Period.

Be aware that:

  • You cannot burn off during the Fire Danger Period
  • We provide further conditions on approval of your Permit. You must follow these.
  • You must read and be aware of all Permit conditions.
  • If you have any questions please call the Emergency Management Team on 9298 8000.

Preparing for burning off

Council’s Municipal Fire Prevention Officers may inspect your property to make sure the burn off will be safe.

You will need to:

  • Have your burn piles in a cleared location.
  • Have everything ready for inspection.
  • Have an ample water supply.

Burning off without a valid Council permit may receive a fine. An infringement notice for burning off without a permit is $500.

When you can burn off

There is a ban on all open air fires during Total Fire Ban days.

We suspend permits for the duration of any Total Fire Ban days and during the Fire Danger Period.

You must also:

  • Have a valid Permit to Burn
  • Follow the Permit conditions.
  • You must register any burning off before it occurs. Register with the Emergency Services Telecommunications Authority (ESTA) on 1800 668 511.
  • Notify your neighbours at least two hours beforehand.
  • Have a 3 metre clear area around the fire.
  • Attend the fire at all times.
  • Have means to put out the fire.
  • Make sure the fire is completely out before leaving.

Burning off alternatives

Make sure you have disposed what you can through other channels before considering burning off. This reduces fire fuel.

  • Use your green bin.
  • Use your hard and bundled green waste collection.
  • Compost or mulch dead leaves, small branches and sticks.
  • Take items to the Knox Transfer and Recycling Stations.
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