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Burning Regulations and Permits

Controlled fire with fire truck

To get a burning permit, go to the Fire Prevention Office located at Fire Hall 1, 8767 132 Street. Note that some fees may apply.

Outdoor Burning Regulations

As outlined in Surrey's Fire Prevention Bylaw, open burning is not permitted in the City of Surrey. This means backyard fires, fire pits, chimneas, and any other type of outdoor burning other than propane or natural gas fire pits are not allowed.

In addition:

  • Within City Parks, natural gas and propane are permitted to be used only within the picnic table areas, while charcoal briquettes are only permitted to be used at picnic table sites that have City-sanctioned coal disposal containers.
  • During a burning ban, charcoal briquettes will not be permitted within City Parks.
  • There is no burning of any solid fuels at any time unless the fire is compliant with the Fire Prevention Bylaw.
  • Cooking fires, campfires, and the burning of garbage are all prohibited in the City of Surrey.
  • Chimneas or any other consumer product that is built for the burning of wood is not permitted.

Burning Permits for Agricultural Purposes

Burning for agricultural purposes is allowed by permit only. The permit holder is responsible for checking the Metro Vancouver Air Quality Index to confirm burning is allowed each day.

Burning Permits for agriculture are subject to the following conditions and limitations:

  • Burning Permits will only be issued for properties zoned as agricultural, which have been classified as Farm/Agricultural land by BC Assessment and are actively engaged in agriculture/farming.
  • Burning Permits are valid from January 1 to April 30 and October 1 to December 31.
  • Failure to abide by any/all of the conditions on the burning permit may result in cost recovery being applied for Fire Department attendance.
  • Proof of BC Assessment classification or Farm Status Card will be required to obtain a Burning Permit.
  • Agricultural Permit Burning will only be allowed for materials relevant to the continuation of the farming or agricultural operation.
  • All materials burned must be indigenous to the property. Materials from land clearing such as stumps and trees cannot be burned at any time.
  • The issue of a Permit is subject to the discretion of the Surrey Fire Service.
  • Burning Permits may be suspended at any time under the authority of BC Wildfire Management or by order of the Fire Chief, Deputy Fire Chief or Chief Fire Prevention Officer.
  • Burning Permits may be suspended or revoked if the permit holder is found to be in violation of the conditions of the permit or conditions set out under the Fire Prevention Bylaw.

Burning Regulations Amended

Taking into consideration the alternatives to burning that are available in the City of Surrey, Surrey Council approved bylaw amendments in an effort to:

  • Reduce air pollution
  • Enhance the health of our citizens
  • Avoid costly Fire Department calls for service

Fire Danger Rating

The weather has a significant impact on wildfires – how they start, how aggressively they spread, and how long they burn.

Surrey staff monitor BC's Wildfire Service Fire Danger Rating on a daily basis during our hot and dry summers to determine the day's fire danger rating in Surrey. The City updates roadside signs, digital billboards, social media, and the City’s webpage accordingly throughout the fire season to advise residents and visitors of the current local fire danger rating.

Prevent Accidental Fires

By following a few simple rules you can enjoy the outdoors and help prevent fires:

  • Dispose of smoking materials properly and make sure they are completely extinguished. Never dispose of cigarette butts out vehicle windows or in planter boxes.
  • Don’t leave barbeques unattended and ensure they are turned off properly after you have finished using them. Keep barbeques at least 1 metre (3 ft) away from the side of buildings.
  • Explain to children the dangers of playing with and lighting fires.
  • Properly dispose of bottles and broken glass you find outdoors to avoid them magnifying the sun’s rays and starting a fire.

For more information, email fireprevention@surrey.ca or call the Surrey Fire Prevention Division at 604-543-6780 and leave your name, telephone number and the information you require on burning regulations in Surrey. Fire Department personnel will obtain the requested information and return your call.

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