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Fire and Rescue

Posted on: September 30, 2021

Open Burning Regulations for Fall and Winter

Open Burning Fall and Winter - NF

The Loudoun County Fire Marshal’s Office (FMO) reminds residents that effective October 1, 2021, through midnight February 14, 2022, open burning is permitted for the burning of leaves and trees, brush, yard, and garden trimmings generated on-site, except where always prohibited. Note: all fires must be called into the Loudoun County Emergency Communications Center at 703-777-0637 prior to ignition and when the fire is extinguished. 

If current weather conditions for open burning deem it to be a high-risk activity, additional restrictions may apply. Burning is always prohibited in urban or built-up areas (such as subdivisions) throughout Loudoun County and the Town of Leesburg and within the town limits of Lovettsville, Middleburg, Purcellville, and Round Hill.

Legally Set Open Air Fires are Subject to All Local Regulations

  • Fires must be constantly attended by a competent person(s) at least 18 years of age, with means to control and extinguish the fire. If unattended and/or a means of extinguishment is unavailable, the fire must be fully extinguished.
  • Open burning may be no closer than 50 ft. from any structure and pose no hazards to a roadway.
  • Bonfires are allowed, but must consist of neatly piled seasoned wood, can be no more than 5 ft. in diameter by 5 ft. in height, and must be at least 50 ft. from any structure.

Prohibited Open Burning

  • The burning of household trash, garbage, refuse, household waste, commercial waste, construction waste or debris, combustible liquid, hazardous waste, impregnated lumber, junk, rubber, stumps, products of salvage operations, plastics, tires, tar-based materials, oil or petroleum-based products, hazardous materials, chemicals, animal carcasses and similar materials or waste is prohibited countywide (Incorporated towns included).
  • Open burning that is offensive or objectionable because of smoke or odor emissions, or when atmospheric conditions or local circumstances make such fires hazardous, open burning shall be prohibited.

Development-Related Burning

  • Agricultural burning, such as clearing of a field or fence row, is limited to materials generated on-site. The burning may be no closer than 50 ft. from a structure and 1,000 ft. from an occupied structure unless prior permission has been given by the occupant and poses no hazard to highways and airfields.
  • All land clearing (pit burn) operations by contractors/landowners for development purposes shall be approved by the FMO. Burning of trees, stumps or brush may require a permit from FMO and the State Air Pollution Control Board.
  • Warming barrels at construction sites shall be approved by the FMO. Only clean lumber can be burned, in a barrel or similar container, that is screened or covered to prevent flying embers, and is not within 15 ft. of any structure. 

The Loudoun County FMO may impose regulations, at any time, based upon a complaint, atmospheric or other environmental circumstances, to restrict or extinguish any fire that is otherwise permitted according to these guidelines. For additional open burning information, please call the Fire Marshal’s Office at 703-737-8600 during normal business hours or visit   

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