Open Air Burning

Recreational Fires

Niagara Falls Fire Department Logo

Recreational fires (backyard fires) are not permitted in the City of Niagara Falls. The Ontario Fire Code allows small confined fires that are used for cooking purposes only. The following information is recommended practices for safe cooking fires and does not necessarily meet all the requirements of the City of Niagara Falls Open Air Burning By-law:

  • Recreational fires are not permitted.
  • Only fires used for the cooking of food is permitted.
    • The size of the fire must be comparable with the type and quantity of food being cooked. For example: A cooking fire to toast marshmallows would be small, and only active for short period of time.
  • The fire cannot create a public nuisance. A nuisance is defined as any emissions from fires that unreasonably interfere with the enjoyment of property. 
  • The fire must be confined by a physical barrier. For example, rocks around the perimeter, tire rim, etc.
  • The cooking fire must be supervised at all times by a competent person at least 18 years of age. 
  • A suitable means to extinguish the cooking fire is in close proximity to the fire. For example a garden hose or fire extinguisher. 
  • Fires must be located in an area where there is no risk to fire spreading to structures, fences or other combustible materials.
  • The fire must be extinguished once the cooking is complete.
  • Chimineas, outdoor fireplaces and other similar appliances are only permitted to be used for the cooking of food.
  • All cooking fires that are creating a public nuisance are required to be extinguish  immediately as they constitute a contravention of the Open Air Burning By-law.

    View the Nuisance Amendments to the Open Air Burning By-law.

In the event the Niagara Falls Fire Department responds to your property for an open-air burning complaint and it is determined that you are burning in contravention of the by-law, you could be responsible for the cost of the Fire Department response. 

If you have any questions, please contact:

Fire Prevention Office, City of Niagara Falls Fire Department
Phone: 905-356-1321 ext. 2207