Town of Newington, CT
Hartford County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Council of the Town of Newington Ord. of 5-15-1930 (§§ 7-1 to 7-4 of the 1974 Code); amended 10-22-2002 by Ord. No. 0103-3. Subsequent amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Citation hearings — See Ch. 13.
A. 
The Chief of the Fire Department is authorized to order the removal of rubbish, brush, old lumber or accumulations which, in his opinion, create a fire hazard.
B. 
Any person who has been warned to remove a fire hazard and does not do so within five working days shall be guilty of an offense.
Except as permitted by regulations promulgated by the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection or by other sections of this Code, no person shall ignite, cause to be ignited, permit to be ignited or maintain any open fires, including but not limited to the following:
A. 
On a public road or right-of-way.
B. 
During periods of extreme fire danger as determined by the Open Burning Official.
C. 
Open burning of brush on residential properties or undeveloped land.
D. 
In the open air before sunrise or after sunset.
A. 
The Town Manager shall designate an Open Burning Official who is authorized to issue written permits as provided by such regulations as outlined herein. Such Open Burning Official shall participate in the program for training of local open burning officials as established by the Commissioner of the Department of Environmental Protection. Such designated Open Burning Official shall serve in a temporary capacity until certified by the Commissioner of the Department of Environmental Protection. The designation of the Open Burning Official may be revoked by the Town Manager.
B. 
A written application for an open burning permit shall be made on a form designated by the Open Burning Official. Said form shall include the following information:
(1) 
The applicant's name.
(2) 
The time and location of the proposed fire.
(3) 
The purpose of the fire.
(4) 
The type of material to be burned.
(5) 
Such other relevant information as the Open Burning Official deems appropriate.
C. 
Every such application shall be granted or denied as soon as practicable and, when granted, will be logged and a written permit shall be provided to the applicant indicating the date the permit issued, the materials allowed to be burned, the location where such open burning is to occur, the time of day that such open burning is permitted, the expiration date of such permit, and such other information as the Burning Official deems appropriate. A permit issued under this section shall be applicable only for the occasion(s) or the purpose(s) for which it has been obtained. Only the materials and quantities specified on the permit may be burned.
D. 
An application shall be denied when:
(1) 
Because of wind, drought, or other atmospheric or local conditions, and/or type or condition of material to be burned, and/or proximity to structures or combustible materials, and/or availability of means of fire control, and/or other environmental factors, said fire would constitute a hazard, a nuisance, or a danger to public safety, or other good and sufficient reasons.
(2) 
A practical and alternative method for the disposal of the material to be burned exists, including but not limited to the following techniques: chipping, cutting for forest products, landfilling, piling for protective cover for wildlife and stockpiling.
E. 
No such permits shall be issued during the first or any other stage of an air pollution emergency episode as declared by the Commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection, except as permitted by such regulations.
F. 
No permit shall be valid for more than seven days from the date such permit was issued.
Application for the following shall be made through the Opening Burning Official(s), who shall forward such application to the Commissioner of the Department of Environmental Protection or his designee:
A. 
Fires for the disposal of dangerous material, such as toxic gases, where there is no reasonable alternative method.
B. 
Fires to thwart a hazard which cannot be properly managed by any other means, or fires which are necessary for the protection of public health.
C. 
Fire-training exercises where other than liquid fuels are burned.
Upon obtaining a written permit from the Open Burning Official, open burning shall be allowed only in accordance with the following conditions:
A. 
Reasonable safety precautions must be taken, including clearing of grass and trees in the burning area, providing a charged water hose or fire extinguisher, and providing adequate personnel to control the burn, and having no other combustible material within 20 feet of the allowed burn. Until such fire is extinguished, such open burning shall be constantly attended by competent person or persons who is/are at least 18 years of age.
B. 
No brush pile larger than 10 feet by 10 feet by three feet may be burned at any one time. Brush must originate from the property on which the burning will occur. “Brush” is defined as shrubs, vegetation, or prunings the diameter of which is not greater than three inches at the widest point.
C. 
Open burning must be performed in accordance with the General Statutes of the State of Connecticut and with the appropriate permit from the Open Burning Official.
D. 
Open burning shall be permitted only during the period of November through April, except for fire-training exercises, which may be performed at any time of year.
E. 
Agricultural burning for vegetation management shall only be performed on those properties designated as "farmland" by the Assessor's Office for the Town of Newington.
F. 
No open burning shall be performed between sunset and sunrise unless so authorized by the Open Burning Official.
G. 
A copy of the permit shall be kept in the possession of the applicant at the burning site at all times during the burning.
H. 
No person kindling or maintaining an open burning fire permitted by this chapter shall be relieved of any legal responsibility if the fire escapes or causes personal injury or property damage. Neither the Open Burning Official nor the Fire Department or any of its members nor the Town of Newington or any of its employees, agents, public officials or others shall be liable for damages to any person, firm or corporation resulting from an open burning fire whether or not kindled or maintained pursuant to a permit issued under this chapter.
Notwithstanding the other provisions of this chapter, a permit for open burning is not required for the following:
A. 
Barbeques or other outdoor fires solely for the cooking of food for human consumption.
B. 
Campfires and other fires for ceremonial or recreational purposes, provided that only nonprocessed wood is burned and written permission is obtained from the property owner prior to ignition, and further provided that it meets reasonable safety precautions as determined by the Open Burning Official.
C. 
Fires used in conjunction with construction activities, such as fires in portable heating devices; fire essential to street installation or paving activities, repairing of utilities or similar work, provided that it meets reasonable safety precautions as determined by the Open Burning Official. Warming fires at stationary construction sites shall be conducted in a barrel or similar container.
A. 
Notwithstanding the provisions of this chapter, no person shall ignite, cause to be ignited, permit to be ignited or maintain any open fire, nor shall any person authorize others to do so on land controlled by such person, in such a manner as to allow such fire to burn out of control so as to require response of fire apparatus and/or fire personnel, whether or not a permit has been required or issued.
B. 
The Open Burning Official, Fire Marshal, Fire Chief or any officer of the Fire Department, the Director of Health or his designee or any sworn office of the Police Department may require any person who ignites or maintains a fire herein to extinguish such fire forthwith.
A. 
Any person who has been warned to remove a fire hazard pursuant to § 188-1 and does not do so within five working days shall be in violation of this chapter.
B. 
Any open burning conducted without a permit and not otherwise allowed under this chapter shall be a violation of this chapter.
C. 
Failure to extinguish a fire under this chapter when directed by the Open Burning Official, Fire Marshal, Fire Chief, an officer of the Fire Department, the Director of Health, or his designee, or any sworn officer of the Police Department shall be a violation of this chapter.
D. 
A determination by the Fire Chief or the Fire Marshal of the Town of Newington as to whether a fire has been allowed to burn out of control shall be prima facie evidence of a violation of this chapter in any action under this chapter.
E. 
Any person who fails to comply with any provision of this chapter shall be issued a citation and fined by the Open Burning Official in an amount not to exceed $100 per incident.
A. 
All fines imposed under this chapter which are uncontested shall be made payable to the Town of Newington and shall be received by the Open Burning Official or his agent within 10 business days from receipt of the citation. All fines collected by the Open Burning Official or his agent shall be directed to the Town Treasurer.
B. 
If no payment is received for any fine imposed under this chapter within the time allowed for payment, then the Open Burning Official or his agent shall act in accordance with the procedures established in § 13-3A of the Code of Newington.
C. 
The procedure for admitting liability to a violation under this chapter and the hearing procedure for any citation issued pursuant to this chapter shall be in accordance with the provisions set forth in § 13-3B through E of the Code of Newington.