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Tuesday, May 5, 2020

Meaford Fire Ban Lifted

Meaford | by Claire McCormack  

Campfires and open burn permits are allowed again after ban due to COVID-19.

Meaford has lifted its open air fire ban.

It had been in place since April 3rd.

Fire Chief John De Hooge says in a statement, "I'd like to thank all our residents who respected the fire ban to help keep our firefighters and community safe."

De Hooge says the ban was put in place to reduce firefighter exposure to community spread of COVID-19. Now that a month has passed and the measures of social distancing, hand washing, and staying home are showing results, we are able to safely lift the fire ban.

He notes this supports our agricultural community and allows them to start cleaning up their properties for spring.

The town has these guidelines:

Residents may now have campfires or open burns under 1 cubic meter using a safe container like an outdoor fire grate, fireplace or fire pit. All fires must be 3 metres (10 feet) from any structure, property line, or combustible material.

Those who have open burn permits may now have controlled burns on their property, subject to the Open Air Burn By-law. Some of the rules include:

Having a minimum of 0.4 hectare (1 acre) of land
Burning clean and clear wood only
Supervising the fire at all times by someone 18 years old or older
Keeping an adequate means of extinguishment readily available
Ensuring the fire is at least 10 m (33 ft) from any structure, property line, fence, road, overhead wires, combustible material or obstruction
Penalties/charges will be issued to anyone who burns without a permit.  As the threat of community spread of COVID-19 still exists, having a valid 2020 Burn Permit will be strictly enforced to help us minimize our response should the fire department receive a complaint.

To apply for a burn permit or for more information on practicing fire safety, visit www.meaford.ca/fire.

 

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