Open Air Burning
Open air burning includes bonfires, fire pits, sky lanterns and the use of various types of outdoor fireplaces (also known as a “Chiminea”). Although outdoor fireplaces can be purchased at retail outlets throughout the city, it does not mean open air burning is permitted for their use.
Open air burning is not permitted within the City of Toronto and is enforceable under Ontario Fire Code Article 188.8.131.52.
(1) Open-air burning shall not take place unless
(a) it has been approved, or
(b) the open-air burning consists of a small, confined fire that is
(i) used to cook food on a grill, barbecue or spit,
(ii) commensurate with the type and quantity of food being cooked, and
(iii) supervised at all times.
(2) Sentence (1) does not apply to the use of an appliance that
(a) meets the requirements of the Technical Standards and Safety Act, 2000,
(b) is for outdoor use,
(c) if assembled, has been assembled in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions, and
(d) if installed, has been installed in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions.
At no time is it permissible to burn leaves, rubbish or anything else that is not related to cooking as described above. Any open air burning that does not meet the above requirements in the Ontario Fire Code shall be extinguished.
There are some rare occasions where open-air burns are approved, examples of these would include:
- those conducted in designated areas within City Parks where an Event Letter permitting the burn is obtained from Parks, Forestry & Recreation.
- those conducted on private property for religious purposes or fire extinguisher training where express consent has been obtained from the property owner.Prior to issuance of an Open Air Burn Permit, Toronto Fire will conduct a site inspection.
- Gas Fire Pits (Campfire Effect Units) are designed to operate with propane or natural gas. They are intended for outdoor use only, not for food preparation. In Toronto, patio campfire units that are ULC and CSA approved are deemed “approved” under the Fire Code provided they are supervised at all times, and operated in accordance with manufacturer’s instructions in a safe manner and location away from combustibles.
Note: Solid fuel burning appliances are unacceptable.
For clarification or additional information regarding open air burning contact Fire Prevention between 7:30 AM to 5:30 PM at:
416 338-9150 (North Command)
416 338-9250 (East Command)
416 338-9350 (South Command)
416 338-9450 (West Command)