Recreational fires keep local fire department busy - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Recreational fires keep local fire department busy

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    Cedar Rapids

    Local news and information for Cedar Rapids, Marion, Hiawatha, Center Point, Mt. Vernon, Central City, Robins, Alburnett, Fairfax, Palo, Ely, Lisbon, Springville and the surrounding Linn County area.

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    Local news and information for Cedar Rapids, Marion, Hiawatha, Center Point, Mt. Vernon, Central City, Robins, Alburnett, Fairfax, Palo, Ely, Lisbon, Springville and the surrounding Linn County area.

    More >>
CEDAR RAPIDS (KWWL) - The Cedar Rapids Fire Department wants to remind residents of the guidelines for recreational fires inside city limits after responding to 53 illegal recreation fires from March 1 through May 31 of this year.

Greg Buelow, Public Safety Communications Coordinator for the City of Cedar Rapids, says firefighters were call to 68 possible illegal recreational fires. Buelow says 53 of those were illegal and had to be put out by firefighters.

Buelow says the most common reason the fires are illegal is that people are burning yard waste or trash. Other reasons include the fire being left unattended, burning to close to a building or burning too close to a wood pile or other fuel source.

While recreational fires can be fun and relaxing, there are guidelines resident need to follow.

- Recreational fires shall not be conducted within 25 feet of a structure like a house, garage, or shed or near combustible materials. The distance from a structure can be reduced to a 15 feet minimum if the unit has complete protection with a lid and screen.
- The total fuel area needs to be 3 feet or less in diameter and 2 feet or less for fuel height.
- An attendant needs to stay with the fire constantly and continue to supervise until the fire is extinguished. The attendant should have buckets, shovels, garden hoses, or a fire extinguisher readily available for use.
- Contaminated or treated wood should never be burned. These materials contain derivatives of arsenic or cyanide and produce poisonous gases.
- Children should not be allowed to play around a fire.
- Use common sense and respect your neighbors by not allowing smoke to blow towards their home or laundry, for example. Recreational fires are not safe when winds exceed 15 mph.
- Yard waste should be properly disposed of in a Yardy cart, for example.
- If the Fire Department determines that a hazardous condition exists, firefighters can require extinguishment. If a burn ban is issued throughout Linn County, recreational fires would be prohibited.

Also, the following items are not allowed to be burned within city limits:

- Leaves
- Tires
- Tar
- Paint
- Grass
- Dead Animals
- Contaminated Wood
- Used Oil
- Garbage
- Rubber Products
- Brush Piles
- Plastic

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