Open burning in Salisbury is now prohibited

Published 12:03 am Wednesday, November 8, 2023

SALISBURY — The city of Salisbury and 14 counties in western North Carolina have banned open burning due to the risk of wildfires in the state. Open burning involves burning leaves, branches or similar plant material. Burning trash, lumber, tires, newspapers, plastics or other non-vegetative substances is also illegal.
If someone needs to report a wildfire or witnesses an individual intentionally start one, please call 911. The ban was issued by the N.C. Forest Service, but it does not apply to a fire within 100 feet of an occupied dwelling. Those fires will be handled by local municipalities.
The N.C. Forest Service has informed county fire marshals of the ban and asked for their input of implementing a burning ban, too. If a fire within a 100-foot area of a dwelling can not be contained, a North Carolina forest ranger can take a sensible approach in order to put it out. Anyone who is responsible for starting the fire may be liable for any costs related to extinguishing the fire.
Local ordinances and air quality regulations have the potential to affect open burning. Outdoor burning is not permitted in places covered by “code orange” or “code red” air quality forecasts. Campfires are not exempt from the ban; portable gas stoves or grills should be used for cooking while camping. Residents are allowed to utilize their grill or barbecue if no ordinance is in effect that prevents this.
Salisbury Fire Chief Bob Parnell advised that there have been “no significant instances” of brush fires recently within city limits, but stressed that people need to be cautious, especially when they are on their own property doing routine activities.
“Do not carelessly use fire pits or open cooking fires in our community. It’s so dry based on the dry foliage that’s falling and the near drought conditions we’re experiencing. Fire moves very quickly, so please be very careful with open burning,” Parnell said.
Learn more about air quality forecasts at…/air-quality…/air-quality-forecasts
Learn about wildfire risk assessments and preparedness and prevention plans on the N.C. Forest Service website at or