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4 p.m. open burning law takes effect statewide on Feb. 15

Virginia’s 4 p.m. burn law goes into effect next week.

The statewide ban on open-air burning prior to 4 p.m. takes effect next Wednesday, Feb. 15, and continues through April 30, according to the Virginia Department of Forestry.

Open-air burning before 4 p.m. is banned if the fire is within 300 feet of the woods or dry grass which could carry fire to the woods. Burning is allowed between 4 p.m. and midnight, as long as the burner takes proper precautions and attends the fire at all times.

“It is critical that burners take precautions before using fire, as there may be legal and financial implications,” a VDOF release stated. Even if a person takes all proper precautions and obtains any locally required permits, whoever started the fire is responsible for suppressions costs should the fire escape. Violation of the 4 p.m. burn law is considered a Class 3 misdemeanor with a fine of not more than $500.

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