6 Steps for Safe Burning
Before you light that burn pile in your back yard or do any burning, do yourself, your neighbors and your fire department a favor by making sure you’re really prepared.
1. Get a permit from the town clerk (649-1419), or from Linda Cook (603-208-7847), the fire warden. It’s free, although it does not relieve you from any liability related to the fire or any damage it might cause. (You don’t need a permit if the ground is covered with snow but you still need to notify Hanover Dispatch.)
2. Call the Hanover Dispatch at 603-643-2222 just before you light the fire even if the ground is covered with snow, and tell them your location and roughly how long you expect to be burning. This way, when your neighbor or someone driving by reports smoke or a fire on your property, you won’t suddenly be greeted by fire engines with flashing lights and sirens.
3. Keep a close eye on weather conditions. Yes, you may have a permit, but if a sudden wind comes up, it’s just not wise to burn. People often tell us they are amazed at how quickly a small brush fire can spread, endangering houses and property. Even when there is no wind, keep your fire at least 50 feet from any structures.
4. Be sure you have sufficient help and tools on hand to control the fire. High on your list should be a garden hose, shovel, rake and dirt or sand that can be thrown on flames. Portable water fire extinguishers are also an excellent idea.
5. Remember that you can burn only natural wood materials. Burning treated wood, trash, rubber, plastics or debris is against the law. You are also not allowed to use accelerants such as gasoline or diesel fuel to start your fire. Ask us about this – it’s for everybody’s protection, and it’s the law.
6. Never leave your fire unattended for any reason and extinguish before dark. Make sure it is completely out before you leave the area. We’re called out more often than you’d think to put out fires that property owners were “absolutely positive” had been extinguished.