Burning Regulations & Pile Burns for Bushfire Fuel Management

 

Recreational and Cooking Fires

During a total fire ban, campfires, recreational fires, solid fuel barbecues, ovens and kettles are prohibited. A gas or electric barbecue may be used during a Total Fire Ban provided:

  • It is on a residential property.
  • It is within 20 metres of a house, dwelling or within a Council approved area.
  • It is under the direct control of an adult.
  • The ground within three metres of the barbecue is cleared of all materials which could burn.
  • There is a continuous supply of water available.

At all other times a campfire or barbecue may be lit for cooking or warmth providing:

  • The fire is in a permanently constructed fire place with at least two metres cleared of any combustible material, or
  • It is at a site with at least three metres cleared of any combustible material.
  • An adult is in attendance at all times.
  • The fire is completely extinguished before leaving.

 

Pile Burns

  • Pile burning is only permitted on lands zoned RU1, RU2, RU3 and RU6 under The Hills Local Environmental Plan 2012, greater than 4,000m2 and land located outside of the Sydney Fire District (Fire and Rescue NSW area).
  • Pile burns are only permitted outside the bush fire danger period (1 April - 31 August, unless varied).

Please note: The NSW RFS Commissioner has declared a variation to the Bushfire Danger Period, which shall commence on 1 September 2018.  

  • Piles must not exceed 2 metres in length and width and 1.5 metres high.
  • Only dead or dry vegetation originating on the property shall be burnt on that property.
  • On allotments that contain an approved dwelling.
  • Any form of waste material is prohibited and appropriate waste disposal methods should be explored.

There is a notice of approval for pile burns issued by Council which sets out requirements for conducting a pile burn.

Information on General Approval for Pile Burns for Bushfire Fuel Management(PDF, 57KB)

If you don't comply with the general approval an application form (below) will be required for submission to council.

Application for Approval to Burn Dead and Dry Vegetation(PDF, 114KB)

If you do not comply with the conditions specified in the Notice of Approval, you are not permitted to burn without separate approval being issued by Council and/or the NSW Rural Fire Service – The Hills District.

You can check your land zoning by visiting Local Environment and Planning page.

 

1 April to 30 September – ‘Hazard Reduction Season’

During the Hazard Reduction Season land owners/occupiers are required to comply with council’s Notice of Approval for Pile Burns for Bushfire Fuel Management.

Penalties of $500 for individuals and $1000 for corporations apply for non-compliance with the Notice.

 

1 September to 31 March – ‘Bush fire Danger Period’

During the bush fire danger period, land owners/occupiers are required to comply with council’s Notice of Approval for Pile Burns for Bushfire Fuel Management and receive a Fire Permit issued by the NSW Rural Fire Service.

For information on how to obtain a Fire Permit, please contact The Hills District RFS on 02 9654 1244 or email thehills.fcc@rfs.nsw.gov.au.

Individuals may have the ‘Notice of Approval’ revoked by an Authorised Officer of The Hills Shire Council or the NSW Rural Fire Service or on any Total Fire Ban’ day or if a ‘No Burn Notice’ has been issued.

 

Are there penalties if I do not comply with the Notice of Approval?

Yes, failure to comply with the Notice of Approval may result in an on-the-spot fine of $500 for individuals and $1000 for corporations. In the event of prosecution, the maximum penalty is $5,500 for an individual and $11,000 for a corporation.

Pile burns that do not comply with the requirements for conducting a pile burn require completion of an application form for approval for pile burn/s to seek approval to conduct the pile burn.

Application for Approval to Burn Dead and Dry Vegetation(PDF, 114KB)

 

 

Agricultural or Hazard Reduction Burning

Agricultural burning relates to the removal of stubble or diseased crops and applies only where the property has agricultural land users.

Hazard reduction burning can only be conducted where the property has a significant area of bushland on or near to it. Material to be burnt must be natural vegetation only. Burning of waste materials is prohibited and penalties apply.

You must:

  • Obtain a permit to burn during the bushfire danger period. Permits are available from the NSW Rural Fire Service – The Hills District Phone: 02 9654 1244.
  • Provide 24 hours notice, outside the bushfire danger period to your adjoining neighbours and to the NSW Rural Fire Service – The Hills District Phone: 02 9654 1244.
  • Check with the Environment Protection Authority (EPA) about air pollution. No burning is permitted on high pollution days. Phone: 131 555.
  • Ensure an adult is in attendance at all times.
  • Make sure adequate supply of water is available at all times.
  • Clear an area of 4.5 metres around any pile of vegetation.