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Fire Prevention

Regulations regarding fire danger season, backyard burning, overgrown grass, BBQ's in the City of Marion and Burning Permits.

Tips for burning at home

Be aware of your burn

City Limits article published June 2023

Warming up your toes in front of a toasty fire through the winter months sounds wonderful, but burning wood can have significant impacts on the environment.

If you’re keen to reduce carbon emissions then be aware that, unfortunately, burning wood in fires and pits releases a substantial amount of carbon into the air.

The smoke then carries itself into the environment, causing further pollution and potentially harmful health effects to our community.

If you do have a wood-burning heating system, here are some helpful tips to reduce smoke pollution:

  1. Good wood storage – keep it dry and well-ventilated.
  2. Go with the glow – overfilling your heater can promote excess smoke, so stack several smaller logs loosely so air can circulate.
  3. Choose your wood – dry, seasoned wood is best for burning; never burn rubbish, driftwood, painted or treated wood.
  4. Start off right – use kindling wood, paper or firelighters; do not use gasoline, kerosene, propane torches or charcoal starters.
  5. Do a smoke check – once your fire is going, go outside to check the smoke coming from your flute.

Fire danger season and block clearing process

When is the fire danger season and what do I need to know?

The Fire Danger Season generally runs from November through to April, although these dates may change due to seasonal conditions.

Each year a Fire Danger Season is set by the South Australian Country Fire Service (CFS). The Fire Danger Season for Adelaide Metropolitan has now been announced.

Fire ban districtStart dateFinish date
Adelaide Metropolitan

1 December 2022

30 April 2023

A letter is sent to owners of vacant land before the Fire Danger Season begins advising of the importance to clear the land. The Fire Prevention Officers inspect all vacant land to ensure compliance with the Fire and Emergency Services Act 2005 and where necessary take appropriate action.

For further information please visit the CFS website on the link below.

Fire Danger Season Dates - CFS

What happens next and non-compliance?

All vacant land within the City of Marion is inspected by Community Safety Inspectors after the date specified in the letter by which we request all land be cleared.

If a parcel of vacant land is found to pose a risk of the outbreak or spread of fire, the owner of the land may be issued with a legal order under the Fire and Emergency Services Act requiring necessary steps to be taken to reduce the risk of fire.

If the necessary steps are not taken, then the City of Marion will take the required steps and the costs will be passed on to owner of the land.

An expiation notice for non compliance may also be issued.

The City of Marion has the authority under the Act mentioned above to take whatever steps necessary including the issue of legal orders and the recovery of any associated costs (legal or other) from the owner if the requirements of the Act are not met.

How can I appeal against an expiation notice?

An application for review can be submitted on one occasion only.

Appeals against expiation notices must be in writing using the Review of Decision Application Form.

These forms are available from Council upon request or can be downloaded below.

Once you have filled the form in, you can then submit your form to council at

Review of Decision Application Form Other

Burning in your backyard

Burning Activities

Wood smoke from burning in the open can have an impact on people, the environment and contributes to poor air quality in South Australia.

The use of open fires and barbecues is subject to fire ban regulations and restrictions apply throughout the fire season.

Rules around the Environment Protection (Air Quality) Policy 2016 have been designed so residents can still enjoy outdoor activities in winter and will minimize the impacts of wood smoke in the community. This allows burning in the open within metropolitan Adelaide where it is for:



Use of a brazier, chiminea or a fire pit for outdoor domestic heating.

No permit. Fuel is restricted to charcoal only, no wood allowed.

Campfire in the course of camping, scouting or a similar outdoor recreational activity.

Requires Council approval by permit.

Burning agricultural or forestry waste.

Requires Council approval by permit.

Burning vegetation for fire prevention or control.

Requires Council approval by permit.

Burning vegetation for any other purpose.

Requires Council approval by permit.

Please click here for further information regarding what you can and cannot do during Fire Danger Season through the CFS.

Fires for the preparation of food or beverages

Fires are permitted when they are solely used for the preparation of food and beverages or the heating of liquid (e.g sauce). This can be done only if you are using charcoal, dried, untreated and unpainted timber or dried garden prunings and do not cause a smoke or ash nuisance.

During Fire Season and on total fire ban days the following additional requirements must be observed:

  • 4 metre clearance around and above the fire
  • A responsible person who is able to control the fire at the site until it is extinguished
  • An appropriate extinguisher is at hand.
What you can and cannot do during Fire Danger Season

Please click here for information regarding what you can and cannot do during the Fire Danger Season and on Total Fire Ban days, through the CFS.

CFS Fact Sheet - What can I do and what can't I do

Burning of refuse

Backyard burning of refuse is prohibited in all metropolitan council areas.

What can I burn outside of Fire Danger Season?

In a built-up area, charcoal is the only material allowed to be burnt. This can be done in a fire no bigger than 1 square metre. When burning, it is illegal to cause a smoke nuisance to neighbours and other persons in the local area. Outside of built-up areas the burning of agricultural, forestry waste or broad-acre burning may be considered as long as the relevant burning code of practice is adhered to.


It is recommended you speak with the person or group directly in the first instance and they may not be aware of the issue and can encourage them to take heed.

If you are unsuccessful in resolving the issue or feel uncomfortable please report this to our Customer Service Team by calling (08) 8375 6600.

Council will attempt to respond to complaints regarding this matter during our operating hours of 8am to 6.00pm.

If the matter is urgent please contact Emergency Services on 000. Council will follow up non urgent complaints the following business day.

Burning Permits and Approval

What is a Burning Permit?

A Burning permit is issued in accordance with clause 6 of the Environment Protection (Air Quality) Policy 2016 and is required if you are:

  • Burning agriculture or forestry waste.
  • Burning off vegetation for fire prevention or control.
  • Burning dry wood or other dry plant material in a brazier, chiminea or fire pit in the open for domestic heating.
  • Lighting or maintaining a fire in the open using charcoal, dry wood or other plant material for campfire, for other reasons: cultural purposes.
How do I apply for a Burning Permit?

If you wish to apply for a burning permit, please completed the below application form

Burning in the Open Permit

Burning Permits Register

Permit Number: BP001

Permit Location: Klippell Avenue, Trott Park
Permit Dates:
29 July 2023 and 5 August 2023

Further Information

For further information, please contact:

City of Marion

Community Health and Safety

In person: 245 Sturt Road, Sturt SA 5047

Post: PO Box 21, Park Holme SA 5046