Fire department lifts open air fire ban but warns permits still re

The fire department has lifted a city-wide open air fire ban imposed earlier this month, but warn that permits are still required for outdoor fires, including the use of wood-burning fireplaces outside.

Residents need to get a permit then call the Ottawa Fire Services communications centre at 613-580-2880 before setting an open air fire, according to an update issued Tuesday.

Open air fires — including the use of outdoor fireplaces — are prohibited at all times in most densely populated urban and suburban areas, the fire department said. Residents can use the online burn permit application tool to see if their property is eligible.

Devices that can be used without a permit include outdoor natural gas, propane or ethanol fireplaces, and gas, charcoal or propane barbecues and hibachis designed and intended only for cooking. They can’t be used to burn wood, tree limbs, branches or non-compostable material, the fire department said.

The ban on open air fires including agricultural and brush pile burns, campfires and wood-burning outdoor fireplace, was imposed April 7 to prevent sparking grass and brush fires. They can spread fast in early spring before green grass starts to show through dead vegetation.

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