Burn Permits

October 22, 2021: Nevada, Yuba, Placer, and Sierra Counties Burn Suspension Lifted

Residents wishing to burn must verify it is a permissive burn day before burning by contacting Northern Sierra Air Quality Management District: (530)  274-7928  MyAirDistrict.com.

For residential burn piles, a burn permit issued by a fire department is required for certain times of the year. You may obtain these free permits from most fire departments in Nevada County and now online at BurnPermit.Fire.ca.gov.

View the CAL FIRE video here on burning safety: cal fire video image

Burn piles are prohibited in the city limits of Grass Valley and Nevada City. A burn permit from the fire district is required in the Town of Truckee. Check with your Home Owners Association if burn piles are permitted in your neighborhood.

Residents are urged to take precautions while burning outdoors to prevent starting a wildfire. Escaped debris burns are a leading cause of wildfires during winter and spring.

Manage Your Burn Pile Safely:

  • Before you burn check to see if it is a permissible burn day at MyAirDistrict.com or by calling (530) 274-7928, Western Nevada County, or (530) 582-1027, Eastern Nevada County.
  • Check the weather. Avoid burning on dry, windy days.
  • Burn dry, dead material only such as leaves, pine needles, and tree trimmings. Treated wood, household trash, and tires are illegal to burn.
  • Choose a safe burn site. Avoid overhanging branches, powerlines, and structures.   Allow yourself at least 3x the height of your pile of vertical clearance.
  • Prepare your site. Clear all flammable material to gravel or dirt at least 10 feet in all directions. Spray the surrounding area with water, keep a water source nearby, and have a shovel on hand.
  • Keep neighbors happy and avoid smoke nuisance fines by burning hot and clean. Once your flame is strong, slowly add dry pines needles, leaves, or vines which are known to produce large amounts of smoke if burned exclusively.
  • Keep piles manageable. Add additional material as your pile burns and reduces in size.
  • Burn between the hours of 9:00 am-3:00 pm for optimal smoke dispersion.
  • Stay with your fire and fully extinguish coals with water when you are done. Turn coals and ash over with a shovel, drown your pile with water, and repeat several times. Return to your burn area regularly over the next several days, especially in dry, warm, and windy weather.