Hold fire before burning off
  • Tuesday 24 March 2015

So you’re a rural landowner whose property is overgrown following the recent spate of wet weather and you’ve been waiting for the vegetation to dry out before burning it off.

Sunshine Coast Service Delivery Councillor Ted Hungerford said landowners should hold fire, literally, and consider their options and the applicable regulations first.

“From composting and mulching to taking a load to the dump, there are other ways to remove overgrown vegetation from your property than burning it off,” Cr Hungerford said.

“If you take your green waste to the tip, you can take home up to three cubic metres of mulch for free.

“For those that do decide that a burn off is the best option, remember that a permit from Queensland Fire and Rescue Service is required for burning accumulated material which has a height, width or length exceeding two metres.”

Cr Hungerford said smoke and particles from open-air fires can cause a nuisance to neighbours and interfere with their normal daily activities and health and wellbeing.

“It is a good idea to consider the direction in which the smoke will blow and chat with your neighbours to be sure to minimise any nuisance,” he said.

Handy hints on minimising smoke nuisance and managing burn offs:
• Recycle or reuse wastes where possible
• Regular composting reduces the need for burning in the open air
• Take large branches or trees to council waste tips or transfer stations
• Do not burn paints, hazardous chemicals, wet paper or cloth and sanitary napkins, as they release hazardous chemicals
• Avoid burning wet or green vegetation which smoulders and causes excessive smoke
• Give fires maximum air-flow for efficiency, resulting in less smoke
• Ensure adequate fire control for safety
• Observe weather conditions before lighting fires. If possible, choose a calm day.

Information on lighting fires can be found at Rural Fire Service Qld’s website https://ruralfire.qld.gov.au/Using_Fire_Outdoors/Obtaining_a_Permit_to_Light_Fire/

Council is responsible for regulating environmental nuisance within the community.