Overview

Open fires for recreation or cooking are allowed on private property when open burning is permitted in Martin County. Open burning status is determined by the Fire Danger Index published daily by the Florida Fire Service.

Martin County regulates open burning per County Ordinance, NFPA chapter 10, and Florida Statute, and only authorizes open burning when the Fire Danger Index indicates a low or moderate hazard.

What is an Open burn?

PERMIT NOT REQUIRED:

Recreational Fires. Recreational fires, such as campfires, bonfires and backyard fires in fire pits, are allowed under county code without a county permit. Recreational fires must be no larger than 3 feet in diameter, are limited to 1 cubic yard or less of burnable material, and must be located no less than 25 feet from any structure or combustible material, unless contained in an approved manner such as in a chiminea or outdoor fireplace.

Cooking Fires. Cooking fires are allowed under county code without a county permit for the purpose of cooking food on residential property for groups, gatherings and other events. Examples of cooking fires include: cooking hot dogs, hamburgers, whole pigs, deer or similar animals.

PERMIT REQUIRED:

Residential Yard Waste. A county burn authorization is required for a residential yard waste burn of less than 8 feet in diameter, and can be obtained online via the button below. Yard waste is defined as leaves, shrub trimmings, grass clippings, palm fronds and brush. (Note: Any residential yard waste burn larger than 8 feet in diameter will require a burn authorization from the Florida Fire Service.)

Acreage Burning. Open burning of acreage, or the burning of agricultural debris (i.e. citrus groves, cane fields, etc.), and/or land clearing, will require a burn authorization from the Florida Fire Service, and/or Florida DEP

General Guidelines

  1. Any person responsible for unlawful burning shall bear any applicable costs incurred by Martin County in extinguishing the fire. The owner of the property is ultimately responsible for any activity on their property.
  2. Burn authorizations are valid between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. each day.Any fire left unsecured that necessitates a response for extinguishment will result in no further authorization to burn until expenses have been paid. 
  3. Only vegetative debris may be burned. Construction debris, trash, garbage, etc., must me disposed of at an approved landfill site. The yard waste must have been generated on the same premise as where it is being open burned. 
  4. The location of the open burn must be set back at least 50 feet from any paved public roadway, and 25 feet from any wild lands, brush or combustible structure. 
  5. The open burning must be attended with fire extinguishing equipment at all times. 
  6. Smoke is not a hazard or nuisance.

Applications to burn must be submitted before 5 p.m. on the day prior to the proposed burn. Controlled burn conditions require a daily review. Contact Martin County Fire Rescue at (772) 288-5710 to check state of open/closed burning permission. 

 Safety

  • Make sure the fire is located in a well ventilated area away from combustible material.
  • Keep children and pets a safe distance from the fireplace or fire pit.
  • Utilize a screen and spark arrestor to minimize flaming embers.
  • Do not use lighter fluid or accelerants to start or enhance a fire.
  • Use clean dry hard wood or manufactured logs as fuel for the fire.  
  • Pressure treated, painted or stained woods, and/or construction materials are not permitted to be burned.
  • Ensure the fire is completely extinguished before leaving the area.

Safely enjoy your recreational fire on days that open burning is permitted, and be considerate that your fire is not a hazard to a neighbor’s property or health. Fires that are creating a nuisance or hazard are subject to immediate discontinuance as ordered by Martin County Fire Rescue or the authority having jurisdiction.

Fires that get out of control and create a major hazard are subject to reimbursement charges for all costs incurred by Martin County for the extinguishment of the fire in accordance with Martin County Fire Prevention and Protection Ordinance Chapter 79.

It is unlawful for any individual or group to build a warming fire, bonfire, or campfire and leave it unattended while visible flame, smoke, or emissions exist. Anyone who violates this section is committing a misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083 of the Florida State Statutes.

NOTE: It is illegal to burn household garbage including paper products, treated lumber, plastics, rubber materials, tires, pesticides, paint and/or aerosol containers.

Beach Fire Permits

The Beach Fire Program is managed by the Martin County Parks and Recreation Department. Beach fire permits are ONLY available during non-turtle nesting season (November through February).

Permits are issued in person through the Parks and Recreation Department, Monday through Friday, between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., at:

Martin County Parks and Recreation Department
2401 SE Monterey Road
Stuart, Florida 34996
(772) 221-1418

Beach fires are allowed daily from 5 to 11 p.m. with a permit (in designated fire pits only) at Jensen Beach and Stuart Beach. Program specifics can be viewed on the Beach Fire Permits page.

Martin County Fire Prevention
800 SE Monterey Road
Stuart, Florida, 34994
(772) 288-5633