Recreational Fire Safety Reminders & Rules

A Selection From Marshfield Fire & Rescue’s Newsletter

Submitted by Deputy Chief Pete Fletty, Marshfield Fire and Rescue Department Fire Prevention Division  – The sights, sounds, and smells of summer are near. The robins have returned, the trees are budding, and local baseball is in full swing. As the temperatures begin to rise we will once again be outside enjoying all the joys that summer in Wisconsin brings to families in the Marshfield area. Along with warm spring and hot summer nights comes a rite of passage known as evening recreational fires.

Municipal ordinance (Section 6-31 – Outdoor Fires) was established to prevent any outdoor fires from damaging homes and other buildings. The rules on outdoor fires include:

  • Recreational fires are defined as open outdoor fires used solely for the purpose of personal enjoyment and/or food preparation.
  • Recreational fires shall not be located closer than 30 feet to other flammable and combustible objects such as wood fences, open fields, standing brush, dried grass, structures, patios/decks, outbuildings, and similar improvements or hazards.
  • Recreational fires shall consist of only dry, clean wood and not be ignited by the use of
    flammable and combustible liquids. Materials for recreational fires may not include
    rubbish, garbage, trash, any material made of or coated with rubber, plastic, leather,
    or petroleum based materials and may not contain flammable or combustible liquids.
  • Smoke complaints as a result of a recreational fire shall be grounds for extinguishment.
  • Recreational fires shall be in a fire pit or other nonflammable containment, and may not be any larger than 36 inches in diameter.
  • The fire and rescue department may prohibit any or all recreational and other fires when atmospheric conditions or local circumstances make such fires hazardous.
  • On such occasions when the fire chief or his designee, or deputy chief for fire prevention executive of the Marshfield
  • Fire and Rescue Department declares a dry season and establishes special regulations on the use of any form of fire or smoking materials, the Marshfield Fire and Rescue Department shall have the authority to assist in the enforcement of such regulations.
  • No charcoal burners or gas grills shall be kindled or maintained on combustible balconies or within ten feet of combustible patios on ground floors. This shall not apply to one and two-family dwellings.

Following these helpful hints should help to reduce damage from fires as well as any injuries or deaths. We thank you for your diligence and cooperation throughout the summer. If there are any questions or if further clarification is needed, feel free to contact the Shift Commander or Deputy Chief Pete Fletty at (715) 486-2094.


Read more in the April-May edition of the fire department newsletter, available here.  Individuals can find the newsletter on the city webpage and sign up to receive one directly through the department Facebook page.

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